Thursday, March 21, 2024

Educators Won't Support the SAT Now that Some Colleges Require It

Last month we posted about how some elite colleges are again mandating that applicants submit scores on standardized tests. Yale Admissions' Jeremiah Quinlan:
students with higher scores have been more likely to have higher Yale GPAs, and test scores are the single greatest predictor of a student’s performance in Yale courses in every model we have constructed.
While neither the University of California nor California State University schools require test scores, many California students now want to sit for the Scholastic Aptitude Test because of the requirement from out-of-state colleges. (California private universities, e.g., Stanford and Caltech still don't require the SAT either.)

Fewer students took the now-optional SAT in 2021-2023 (Chron)
When COVID made group testing impracticable, the overwhelming majority of colleges and universities removed the test requirement in 2020. California high schools immediately stopped setting up testing sites. Now that this admissions precondition has partially resumed
Fewer than half of the schools that served as testing centers before the pandemic have returned,
Since many California educators subscribe to the ideology that testing is racist and inequitable, that ideology is probably a factor in their dragging their feet on resuming "School Day" testing, where the test is held at the students' school on a weekday. Some test-takers have to travel out-of-town on weekends in order to sit for the exam, which, of course, adds to the stress and inequity for students who can't afford to do so.

Some high-achieving but underprivileged students want to better their lives by going to and winning scholarships at out-of-state colleges, but educators won't support testing because they think they know what's better for the students than the students themselves.

The rot is pervasive, and it will take years to clean it up if that's even possible.

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