Mistakes on Standardized Tests, Teachers Ordered Not To Alert Students Unless They Ask

The state of New York makes a baffling, unfair decision in response to an error on a standardized test it’s administering starting today:

On the eighth grade test, one question had no correct answer, and schools are instructed to alert students.

And on the fourth grade exam, one question has two correct answers. But in this case, schools are directed to tell students about the problem only if they ask questions about the item.

Elizabeth Phillips, principal of Brooklyn Public School 321, called it “completely unfair” not to warn fourth-graders.

“That means that in some rooms, where a child asks, the children will be at an advantage as they will know that they don’t have to keep deliberating, while in other classrooms, where students don’t ask, some are likely to waste a lot of time on this question,” she said.

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About Daniel Fincke

Dr. Daniel Fincke  has his PhD in philosophy from Fordham University and spent 11 years teaching in college classrooms. He wrote his dissertation on Ethics and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. On Camels With Hammers, the careful philosophy blog he writes for a popular audience, Dan argues for atheism and develops a humanistic ethical theory he calls “Empowerment Ethics”. Dan also teaches affordable, non-matriculated, video-conferencing philosophy classes on ethics, Nietzsche, historical philosophy, and philosophy for atheists that anyone around the world can sign up for. (You can learn more about Dan’s online classes here.) Dan is an APPA  (American Philosophical Practitioners Association) certified philosophical counselor who offers philosophical advice services to help people work through the philosophical aspects of their practical problems or to work out their views on philosophical issues. (You can read examples of Dan’s advice here.) Through his blogging, his online teaching, and his philosophical advice services each, Dan specializes in helping people who have recently left a religious tradition work out their constructive answers to questions of ethics, metaphysics, the meaning of life, etc. as part of their process of radical worldview change.


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