Ranking of Elementary Schools Only Serves to Confuse Parents

    Scores say nothing about student achievement

    TORONTO, Feb. 17 /CNW/ - The Fraser Institute's use of standardized test
scores to rank the province's elementary schools is an exercise in simplicity
that has nothing to do with the quality of education in Ontario, Elementary
Teachers' Federation of Ontario President David Clegg said today.
    "The Institute's 'Report Card on Ontario's Elementary Schools' that was
released today is the latest edition of an ongoing numbers game that only
serves to confuse parents about the learning environment in their children's
schools," said Clegg.
    According to the Institute, the Report Card uses grade 3 and grade 6
results from province-wide standardized tests administered by Ontario's
Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) to calculate each school's
overall rating out of 10.
    "The tests only measure a limited number of curriculum expectations on a
given day in the school year. It's ridiculous to assume that such a test taken
once a year can possibly provide a good indication of student learning and the
critical thinking that takes place in elementary classrooms in Ontario," said
    Clegg pointed out that EQAO again this year has strongly noted its
opposition to the use of its data to rank schools. "EQAO underlines that
province-wide tests are only one measure of student achievement that are
required for constructive change and improvement."
    Parents want to know how their children are doing at school, said Clegg.
But rather than relying on a ranking of schools based on province-wide
standardized testing, parents should talk to their children's teachers to find
out how well they are performing, he said.
    "Teachers know that classroom assessments are the basis of effective
teaching and student learning," said Clegg.
    "On a daily basis, teachers assess how their students are doing, adjust
their teaching to individual student needs, and report back to parents. The
end result is that students receive the skills and knowledge they need to
succeed throughout their school years and later in life."

    The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario represents 73,000
elementary public school teachers and education workers across the province
and is the largest teacher federation in Canada.

For further information:

For further information: David Clegg, President, ETFO, (416) 962-3836
(Office), (416) 948-1592 (Cell); Larry Skory, ETFO Communications, (416)
962-3836 (Office), (416) 948-0195 (Cell)

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Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario

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