Education Blog

Beyond standardized tests: Existing tools for measuring student progress

Am I failing or is it the test?

LA Johnson/NPR

Congress is discussing cutting back on requirements for testing at a time of growing concern about the number of tests kids take and the time they spend taking them.

Annual tests for every child in reading and math in grades 3 through 8, plus one in high school, have been a centerpiece of federal education law since 2002. No Child Left Behind, the current incarnation of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, requires them. But this law has been overdue for reauthorization since before President Obama took office.

NPR's Anya Kamenetz looked at methods the nation could use to monitor learning and ensure equity and accountability if states didn't have to test every child every year. Read her story.

You can watch a Jan. 21, 2015, Senate committee hearing on fixing No Child Left Behind here.