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NEA of New Mexico Holds Public Meetings On "Over-Testing" of Students

PHOTO: Parents are encouraged to attend a public meeting in Santa Fe on Tuesday, which is focused on what some educators say is the over-testing of public schools students. Photo credit: Atlanta Public Schools.
PHOTO: Parents are encouraged to attend a public meeting in Santa Fe on Tuesday, which is focused on what some educators say is the over-testing of public schools students. Photo credit: Atlanta Public Schools.
September 9, 2014

SANTA FE, N.M. - The impact of what some educators see as the over-testing of public school students is the focus of a series of public meetings planned by the National Education Association New Mexico (NEA-NM).

Charles Goodmacher, government relations director at NEA New Mexico, says the organization is holding a public forum in Santa Fe on Tuesday called "Toxic Testing and Its Impact on Students and Teaching."

"The impacts of the tests on students and having to spend an enormous amount of time preparing for testing is arduous," says Goodmacher. "Even the preparation time puts pressure on students. Essentially, the environment becomes a toxic environment for students."

According to Goodmacher, the National Education Association is urging the U.S. Department of Education to soften its policies on standardized testing. Goodmacher says research shows the tests are not benefiting students or teachers.

"It only benefits two sets of people," he says. "One is the corporations which provide the test, and the folks who say they're reforming the schools, when in fact they're basically doing the opposite - they're deforming the schools - because they're taking away time from serious and productive instruction."

Goodmacher says the hope is that the public forums will add to a growing grassroots movement to reform standardized testing in New Mexico and across the nation.

Tuesday's meeting starts at 5:30 p.m. at the NEA New Mexico headquarters building, 2007 Botulph Road, Santa Fe. Goodmacher says the public forum is the first of several planned across the state.

Troy Wilde, Public News Service - NM