The Washington Post
July 21, 2001
Advice to Education Dept. on newest Race to the Top
By Monty Neill
Will a torrent of tests now rain down on little kids?
Under the latest Race to the Top program – the Early Childhood Challenge (ELC) – that scenario has become much more likely. This could mean pre-school children losing play time and experiential learning in order to start practicing for standardized tests. That is already happening in kindergarten as testing pressure flows down from grade 3. Young children do not need a developmentally inappropriate focus on narrowly conceived “academic” skills. Drilling little ones with phonics cards won’t make them better readers when they are 10 or 20 years old.