Fair Test again shows: Latest SAT results show that so-called 'standardized tests' do NOT measure 'college and career readiness'

While the leaders of major city school systems like the members of the Chicago Board of Education and Chicago's enormous and highly paid bureaucracy under "Chief Executive Officer" Barbara Byrd Bennett repeat the phrase "college and career ready" as if they were praying, once again the facts refute the quasi-religious chantings. As the history shows, the "SAT" has evolved into an expensive experience in meaninglessness. When this reporter was in high school, "SAT" supposedly stood for "Scholastic Aptitude Test". But that was refuted by research, so the College Board, which sells the testing program, changed "SAT" to mean "Scholastic Achievement Test." Again, the claim was refuted.

The facts have never stood in the way of a ruling class policy that furthers inequality, and so U.S. Secretary of Education (left) and President Barack Obama (right) continue to push the "Race To The Top" program of hyper-testing America's public school children (but not private school children like the Obama daughters, who attend a Quaker school that doesn't hypertest). Duncan is now the longest-serving Secretary of Education in U.S. history, having begun his term in January 2009 when Obama was inaugurated for his first term as President.Finally, the College Board settled on the fact that "SAT" means SAT and nothing more. An expensive fetish had quietly settled on to American thinking, and it has remained there ever since.

But two facts show up every time the SAT scores are revealed and analyzed:

Fact One: SAT scores correlate directly with family income. The wealthier your family, the higher your "average" SAT score. While there are outliers, they only demonstrate how ugly the economics of race and class are in the USA today.

Fact Two: SAT scores do not predict "college and career readiness." In fact, they barely predict the success in the first year (and only the first year) of college. A better predictor of college "success" are teacher grades from high school. But that fact undermines the national obsession with testing and the attack on teacher professionalism.

As a result of these facts, a growing number of colleges and universities are now "test optional." That means, despite all the pressures, these colleges do NOT require SAT or ACT scores for admission. The number is now more than 800.


SAT scores for the nations high school seniors continue to stagnate according to data being released on Tuesday by the tests sponsor, the College Board. Overall SAT averages have dropped by 21 points since 2006 when the test was last revised. Gaps between racial groups increased, often significantly over that period.

Bob Schaeffer, Public Education Director of the National Center for Fair & Open Testing (FairTest), said, Proponents of 'No Child Left Behind,' 'Race to the Top,' and similar state-level programs promised the testing focus would boost college readiness while narrowing score gaps between groups. The data show a total failure according to their own measures. Doubling down on unsuccessful policies with more high-stakes K-12 testing, as Common Core exam proponents propose, is an exercise in futility, not meaningful school improvement. Nor will revising the SAT, as currently planned, address the nations underlying educational issues.

Schaeffer continued, At the same time, the number of schools dropping SAT and ACT admissions exams requirements has soared. This year at least 14 more colleges and universities have adopted test-optional policies for all or many applicants. A list of more than 840 such bachelor-degree granting institutions is posted at

2014 COLLEGE-BOUND SENIORS SAT SCORES -- with score changes from 2006*


ALL TEST-TAKERS 497 (- 6) 513 (- 5) 487 (-10) 1497 (-21)

* High school graduates in the class of 2006 were the first to take the SAT Writing Test. The No Child Left Behind mandate to test every child in grades 3-8 and at least once in high school went into effect in the 2005-2006 academic year.

More details on 2014 SAT score trends and an extended analysis will be posted at after the College Boards public release of the results

For further information contact Fair Test's Bob Schaeffer (239) 395-6773

cell (239) 699-0468


This week's assessment reform news comes from 15 states and Washington, DC, plus a large number of strong commentaries.

Note, in particular, the trend of jurisdictions, including California, Kentucky, Ohio and New York City, beginning to back away from total reliance on test scores to evaluate schools. And, remember to check out FairTest's new report -- Testing Reform Victories: The First Wave (

California's New Local Control and Accountability Plans (see figures 8 and 9)

California Could Drop Its High School Exit Exam

Colorado Assessment Reform Activists Seek Support for Highway Billboard Ads Against High-Stakes Tests

Should Delaware Parents Be Able to Pull Kids Out of Testing?

D.C. School "Reforms" Have Failed to Narrow Score Gaps

Florida Parents Launch "Say No To Computerized Testing in Grades K-12" Campaign

Florida Tests Beating the Fun Out of Education

School Testing Chaos Puts Florida Children at Risk

Atlanta Georgia Cheating Trial Is Just "Tip of the Iceberg"

Kentucky School Accountability Reports Include Non-Test Factors

Louisiana Teachers Pressured to Keep Quiet About Testing Overkill

New Jersey Is First State Planning to Use PARCC As Graduation Exam

Students "Thrown Under the Bus" By New Jersey's Hellbent Rush to Make PARCC High-Stakes

New Mexico Rushes Forward With Error-Plagued Teacher Evaluations

Parents Can Stop Excessive Testing in New Mexico

New York City Ends School Grades, Reduces Test Score Influence in Evaluations

Upstate New Yorkers Continue Fight Against High-Stakes Standardized Exams

Ohio's Year-Round Testing Culture Leaves Little Time to Learn

Some Ohio School School Quality Profiles Include More Than Test Scores

Oregon Parents Consider Opting Out From New Common Core Test

Testing Companies Fight Over South Carolina Contract

State Testing Cutback Gives Virginia Educators More Assessment Flexibility,0,704691.story

Washington State Stands Firm Against Arne Duncan's Test-Driven Bullying

New Book By Seattle Test-Boycotters: More Than a Score (with a chapter from FairTest)

Unions Will Back Teachers Who Refuse to Administer Mandated Tests

Gallup: Students Need Hope and Support, Not More Testing

Should Communities Determine Their Own Accountability Measures

Why Are We Still Using Standardized Tests?

Is Testing Designed to Reinforce Inequality?

Schools of Opportunity: New Project to Recognize Schools That Give All Students a Chance to Succeed

Common Core Testing Contracts Go to Same-Old Big Vendors

Big Corporations Sue One Another for Lucrative Common Core Contracts

Gender Biased SAT Scores Keep Many Women Out of Elite Colleges

Bob Schaeffer, Public Education Director

FairTest: National Center for Fair & Open Testing

office- (239) 395-6773 fax- (239) 395-6779

mobile- (239) 699-0468



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