Feedback matters for everyone committed to school improvement. Rather than tweaking flawed assessment tools, it is time to consider developing more meaningful feedback systems the impact the critical masses that make up the school community. Cultivating new assessment approaches for students, staff, as well as non-instructional staff, teacher-leaders, principals, superintendents, trustees and grant/philanthropic funders, can lead to remarkable change. The goal of learning for students should not be separate or secondary to performing well on standardized tests. Implementing feedback systems that engage and prompt critical and creative thinking should matter more in today’s schools. Assessment tools that explicitly align with expectations not only create a fair playing field, but they can enhance deep learning. Assessment Tools and Systems: Meaningful Feedback Approaches to Promote Critical and Creative Thinking presents a comprehensive compilation of constructive assessment choices grounded in educational research that emerged through 60 years of experiences as a student, teacher, principal, teacher educator, consultant, school founder, school trustee and educational philanthropist.
Barbara J. Smith is an innovative educator who has been involved in education for over four decades as a teacher, principal, teacher educator, school founder, and board member in public, international, independent and charter schools. As a curriculum and school designer focused on critical and creative thinking, Smith is committed to improving feedback tools and systems in schools around the world.
Introduction: Assessment: A Dog’s Breakfast
5Portfolios, Experiential Learning & Micro-credentials
8Teacher Feedback and Performance Reviews
9Growth of School Leadership
10Feedback and Professional Reviews for Non-Instructional School Staff
11Who Assesses the Watch Dogs?
14Sounds of Silence
15Forging New Paths for School Assessment
When so few educators really comprehend assessment and evaluation, this book provides essential information.
Hot dog! A gem of a romp thought the ins and outs of education assessment. Plenty of great ideas to think about—on all aspects of education assessment, and their ‘what if” alternatives. Time to ‘Test the Test Tubes’!
Assessment Tools and Systems presents a compelling, coherent, and well documented argument against the assessment practices that create a flawed perception of what we know and, most importantly, what students and teachers know about measures of performance. Dr. Smith skillfully leads us from the problems to some of the most imaginative possibilities. Finally, she challenges us to take a pause, refresh our thinking, and critically consider some bold actions. This book interrupts the stance of passive silence that protects the status quo.
Assessment Tools and Systems provides educators, school administrators, and anyone invested in schools and student achievement a powerful and easy-to-read overview of how assessment can maximize, or undermine, the success of students in schools. The focus throughout the book is on action: what practices should we halt, what do we need to start doing, and what do we need to spend more time thinking about? Barbara Smith goes beyond looking at individual teachers and classrooms, recognizing that school culture, school administrators, school trustees, and the communities that surround our schools play a role in using what we know about powerful assessment practices to maximize student success.
As a gifted and experienced educational leader, Barbara Smith understands that we need to go right to the jugular of our education system to set things right. A "must read" book for anyone who wants to create better schools.
Barbara Smith tackles a difficult but absolutely essential question in this book – the role of testing in schools. She taps into her incredible career in education along with current research to explore the issues of testing and the ways to move forward. Packed with practical advice this is a must for anyone interested in improving education for all.