How does the opt-out movement fuel racism in education?

Core Curriculum Standards

In a recent article, parents, students, and teachers have united against taking or administering high-stakes testing through an opt-out movement which could continue to fuel racism in education. The movement seems to present an alternative to accountability that is necessary in any industry. Students, parents, and educators should continue high stakes testing as a measure of educational effectiveness to ensure that racism in education comes to a stand still.

According to the article, there are five proposed myths associated with the opt-out movement which include:

  1. Standardized testing is needed to address the racial and socioeconomic achievement gaps.
  2. High-stakes standardized testing is needed to hold teachers and districts accountable.
  3. Opting out does not prepare children for the real world.
  4. Opting out is just for white middle-class families who care only about their own children.
  5. Opting out does nothing to stop the testing industrial complex.

Why is standardized testing needed to address the racial and socioeconomic achievement gaps? 

The reality is that standardized testing is not necessary to eliminate racism in education. Since 1972, the United States Department of Education has kept track of the academic progress of all ethnicities. The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) is the largest nationally representative​e and continuing assessment of what America’s students know and can do in various subject areas. Paper-and-pencil assessments are conducted periodically in mathematics, reading, science, writing, the arts, civics, economics, geography, U.S. history, and in Technology and Engineering Literacy​ (TEL).

According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, White students continue outperform both Black and Hispanic students. White students are only outperformed by Asian students. Since this standardized testing has existed since 1972, it is impossible for the opt-out movement to be a product of high stakes testing.

Could the real cause for the opt-out movement be a product of the accountability necessary to eliminate racism in education? 

According to second myth, high-stakes standardized testing is needed to hold teachers and districts accountable. If teachers are held accountable for the continued failing of Black and Hispanic students then they will not attain and increase in pay. Persons who do not attain an increase in pay will not be able to financially keep up with the economical increases in America. The eventual outcome is that they will become part of the poor working class. Many of the students that they serve and continue to fail to prepare for a brighter future are part of the poor class.

Will holding teachers and districts accountable through high stakes testing eliminate the possibilities associated with racism in education?

Without holding teachers accountable through high stakes testing the perpetuation of institutionalized racism in education will continue.

The first organization that Black students enter and become subjected to institutionalized racism is the school. We know that institutionalized racism exist due to the disciplinary consequences that are delved out to Black preschool students as well as their continued academic failures are derived from a 78% White female teaching staff. According to the United States Department of Education Office of Civil Rights, Black children overwhelmingly represent students who are suspended from school.

The major reason that institutionalized racism is such a great problem to overcome is due to the impact that schools has on the White economy. There is a projected 3.7 million full-time-equivalent (FTE) elementary and secondary school teachers who were engaged in classroom instruction in fall 2012. Since 78% of the teachers are White female that is the equivalent of 2.886 million teachers. The average salary for a teacher is $44,384.00. The amount that is contributed to the White economy is $128 billion annually.

The teaching profession provides additional advantages to the White family. Since teachers have every evening off, every weekend off, every holiday off, and every summer off, it provides White female teachers an opportunity to contribute to the household finances and to care for their children too.

The opt-out movement continues to perpetrate racism in education while Black and Hispanic students continue to be entrenched in a cycle of generational poverty for which there seems to be no end.

Related Articles

When Tests Get Real

Opting out isn’t an option in the real world

Parent Opt-Out Movement: Engine of Common Core Unraveling?

How Does the Opt-Out Movement Intend to Close Achievement Gaps?


Dr. Derrick L. Campbell, Ed.D.

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About Classroom Racism Exterminator

Racism is a menace and so we’ve been taught for ages which is the primary need for a diversity expert. However, even in this modern society of today where we see a lot of colored celebrities performing on stage with huge fan followings and of course an Afro-America President for the USA, we are still in a phase where racism exists in all its brutal glory and has been eating away at the society like a plague. Classrooms, are one of the most affected areas where color differences and racism exists to its extremes. Even after decades of progress and a lot of communal efforts at bridging the gaps between colored students, white students and teachers, it is sad to say that the disparities still exist and are just as pronounced today as they were back in the 1950s. Colored students, even in the likes of New York City, are attending under resourced schools or have been significantly isolated and made to be unequal in regular schools. Even if the teachers are well-intentioned, perpetuating the structural racism that has taken deep roots into the fabric of our education system is a tough task and make the need for a diversity expert imperative. Teachers need to recognize the biases that exist within the classroom and also take conscious measures to address them and their own biases of course. James Baldwin once said, “it is your very own responsibility to change this society, if you think of yourself as an educated person.” Dr. Derrick L. Campbell took this quote very effectively and straight to the heart and thus this Classroom Racism Exterminator happened. Classroom Racism Exterminator is an initiative that will teach you about your duty and moral obligation towards eliminating racism from the classrooms. This is where and how you will learn about what you need to do to produce a better society that is free of biases and disparities amongst the blacks and the whites. Because we understand how classroom biases and conversations about racism are difficult and how teachers and students almost avoid the topics altogether, we have put together a range of effective methods and products to help address the problem at hand and talk meaningfully to counter issues related to race and racism in the classroom. Diversity expert Dr. Campbell understands that it takes a lot of courage to talk about race and racism and that racial issues need to be viewed through a very critical lens that can understand and attend to the pertaining aspects of racism in the classroom. And therefore through this website we have made a conscious effort to eliminate racism from the classroom and make the educational system equal and beneficial for all. We know and we understand that there are no words that can actually describe how racism feels. There are cases and everybody tends to deal with it in their own manner. Some might lash out verbally or others might just withdraw into shells. Whatever the case, people don’t talk about it openly and teachers don’t really make a conscious effort at addressing the issue. We don’t really know if our children or if the youth is learning to be educated or become racists in their classroom. Our program is focused on helping children of color and regardless of their race, their full potential. We want every student to be able to recognize and reach their full potential so that they think of themselves as responsible citizens of their country and not regard themselves as worthless human beings. Here you will find motivational books and flash card games, all of which have been designed focusing on eliminating racism completely from our classrooms. The books and the games have been consciously designed keeping in mind the American society and educational system. It is a small effort on our and Dr. Campbell’s part to help this society become a better place to live in. A little about diversity expert Dr. Campbell Dr. Derrick L. Campbell the driving force behind Classroom Racism Exterminator is a dynamic figure and a constant source of motivation for us. He has a Bachelors of Science in Electronics Engineering Technology, Math Education, a Masters in Education Administration and also holds a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership. Dr. Campbell is a well known personality throughout the nation. He has lectured at various events including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Iron Sharpens Iron Men’s Conference and a lot of local churches. He is a personality well dedicated towards eliminating the plague of racism from our classrooms and helping every child recognize his/her true potential not the color of their skin. He realizes how a child would feel if he/she was made to think they are worthless human beings. Diversity expert Dr. Campbell is compassionate and related to the experiences and therefore this initiative is a constant and continual effort to eliminate racism manifested in us, completely from the classroom and from our society.
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