The fairness issues are perhaps the thorniest. With the paper-and-pencil TAKS, a testing classroom in Brownsville is virtually identical to one in Beaumont. But not every school offers the same quality of or access to computers.
So will the state have to start paying for computers like it does for textbooks?
In Virginia, schools can receive their students’ results the same day the test is given, which means they can push weaker kids into remediation more quickly. In Texas, getting back test results is a question of weeks, not hours.
I can already see it, districts without computers will be at a disadvantage compared to those testing with computers since richer schools will be able to start remediation faster than the poorer districts. As we become more technology driven, it seems that the consequences of the education funding gap in terms of testing results will increase rather than decrease.
We rank 40th in what we spend, per child, on public schools, 46th in the percentage of adults with high school diplomas and 47th in SAT scores.
But then again, we all know that it’s not education that makes Texas great, it’s…ah…oh yeah, hook ’em horns!
(From a UT alumn who couldn’t afford to go there today.)