Although state tests are federally mandated, that doesn’t mean local districts have to pull certified teachers out of class to grade reading and writing exams (“New York City Teachers Pulled From Class to Grade State Tests,” The Wall Street Journal, Feb. 5). In fact, I submit that given proper training outside vendors can do just as good a job, without sacrificing valuable instructional time.
The problem is finding enough qualified people in light of the meager pay to do such tedious work. I say that because I remember how much I disliked reading and scoring essays during the 28 years I taught high school English in the Los Angeles Unified School District. I don’t know of any English teacher who looked forward to the task. But at least credentialed teachers were decently paid. The pittance offered outside vendors will fail to attract enough takers.
I hope New York City will prove me wrong.
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