Thursday, March 08, 2007


Road Work. Interstate, main artery, on the drive to school, road work. You just cringed even more didn’t you. Well… we have these terrifically well thought out, fantastically useful, wonderful state-mandated assessment tests (read all of that with HUGE sarcasm, because they are actually NONE of the above, except state-mandated) called the CSAP. Juniors and Seniors don’t have to take them, apparently the State doesn’t give a damn if they are doing well in school or not because it’s too late to teach them the stupid ridiculous useless test anyhow.

So our school, the only closed public campus in our county, has always made the Juniors/Seniors sit around and read for hours during testing days, while the other high schools (open campuses) allow them to wander in half way through the day after the underclassmen have had their joyous appointments with their number two pencils. Well under the wisdom and guidance of some new administrators, our school determined that is was no big hackykacky if the Juniors/Seniors came to school late, like every other kid in the county – so starting this year, they get to go to school in the middle of the day on T-W-Th of this week and next. This however presents the challenge of getting my Junior, who does not yet have a drivers license, to school in the middle of the day about 20 miles away, which takes about 25 minutes one way. We have worked it out, splitting it up (though I’ve done all the driving thus far) – and then to throw a wrinkle in it – apparently Freshman also require less testing, and so they also get Thur morning off. That’s today, so I had both of the little darlings in the car with me, we allowed 30 minutes to get to school – well actually more like about 28, and we found the Road work. It took over an hour, in fact 1:05 to get to school. I love road work, I like nice roads, I think road work should be done in the middle of the day – the middle of the night is way too popular (those workers get 2.5 times pay I’ve heard) and should be reserved only for the very very very main roads – in our case I-25 right through the middle of Denver. But… on a three lane interstate, I find it a bit ludicrous that they close ALL THREE Fucking lanes of traffic at lunch time and move thousands of cars into one lane on the skinny shoulder!!! The kids of course were delighted, seems today’s schedule starts with third hour, and neither of them were at all distressed about missing part of their third hour class. So my little hour trip that I was squeezing into the middle of my work day took me nearly 1:45 – not to mention all the interruptions to my work while the darlings were home this morning bugging me – not a particularly productive day so far… so I guess I will blog – HA! Then I will work all night, ha ha.

As for CSAP’s – if a car is driving westbound at 70mph (in a 65mph zone) and it comes across a road crew moving eastbound in the westbound lanes at 2mph should they –
a. drive right off the shoulder toward the nearest bar
b. exit at the nearest exit and drive toward the nearest bar
c. drop by Chipotle and the beer store and head for the park
d. wave to all the other people in the traffic jam and accrue points for those that wave back, and stay the course until you can get to school, voice your concern over a state mandated test that accomplishes nothing but a huge bill for the school system and lost time at work for thousands of parents who have to ferry their children to a learning institution that is focused on teaching how to excel at an assessment test that determines funding for the following year which is really ironic since the schools that actually need more funding might be those that are doing poorly
Oh and just for the record – in any learned persons opinion is there anyway to objectively and equally assess essay answers?

My favorite though – when my daughter had her 8th grade assessment – she was asked this “what will schools be like in 20 years?” – she answered – “Hopefully they won’t have to take this stupid test.”


moosema said...

I choose answer B -- the first answer might cause further damage to your car that probably already needs a front end alignment due to all the snow and potholes that we've endured all winter. Answer C sounds like too much work and Answer D is just plain too realistic.

Hopefully, with Owens (I've always thought he looks like Woody from Toy Story) out of office, we will see the end of CSAP soon.

momumo said...

hey - you passed your csap! congratulations - you can now have 12 more cents per student.

Jen said...

I'd go with C, but I'm a sucker for Chipotle. And beer. ; ) Thankfully A is only in kindergarten, so we haven't hit the idiocy of CSAPs yet. But CSAPs are a big reason why my husband and I are no longer public school band directors! Stupid waste of time/money/brain cells...I actually had a flute student one year write her persuasive essay on why the CSAPs were unnecessary and a waste of time. Didn't hurt her future; she's now a junior at CU in flute performance. :)