ALBUQUERQUE ― American Federation of Teachers New Mexico President Stephanie Ly released the following statement:
“Students, parents, educators, and communities are rightfully excited to hear President Obama call for the reduction of unnecessary testing in our schools, with a cap of no more than 2 percent of classroom time being spent on testing and test-prep. While it is just a beginning, it certainly gives professional educators hope that a serious reevaluation of priorities is coming to the United States Department of Education.
“Across the country, millions of students and parents have called for opting-out of unnecessary testing, and many New Mexican parents and students were among them. With 64% of Americans stating that too much time is spent on testing and test prep, the desire to turn the focus of education away from high-stakes and unnecessary testing and return it to a focus on student development and curriculum is clear. This is a value shared by professional educators across our state.
“Equally important to the call for a reduction in testing is the admission by President Obama that his administration’s policies helped to create a culture of over-testing. We call upon Secretary Hannah Skandera to follow the President’s lead and reduce test prep and testing in New Mexico schools, especially high-stakes tests currently being used to determine student advancement and high-stakes tests being used to determine educator licensure and advancement. We agree with President Obama that we must return a higher degree of local control for our students’ education and only administer tests which are ‘worth it.”