Oregon Department of Education Links Standardized Testing to White Supremacy
NEWYou can now listen to Fox News articles!
The state board of the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) hosted a task force Monday that said standardized testing is rooted in white supremacy and has been “weaponized” against students of color.
State board staff attended the virtual meeting titled “Task Force on a Race-Responsive and Fair Balanced Assessment,” which was led primarily by ODE Assessment Director Dan Farley, although several members contributed to the conversation.
OREGON GOVERNOR SIGNS BILL TO SUSPEND MATH AND READING COMPETENCY REQUIREMENTS FOR HS GRADUATES
Farley kicked off the discussion by saying that the concept of standardized testing rooted in white supremacy is a “truth” to be accepted throughout the state’s education system.
“We started the conversation by introducing the concept that – not the concept but the evidence that the standardized testing story was framed and came from white supremacist or eugenicist sources,” Farley said.
“The history of standardized testing is grounded in white supremacy, a history that has hurt students historically and currently underserved by our education system,” he added.
Farley said that while it’s likely impossible to completely eliminate standardized testing, it’s possible that assessment practices will be presented as “active anti-racist levers” in the state’s education system, and communities “against which the results of state assessments have been weaponized” can actively participate in policy-making.
“We need standardization so that test results are comparable, but I think it’s a question worth asking,” he said. “It’s not a question that, as a white man, I should go out and answer, whether I have an opinion on it or not.”
The same task force previously met in September, when Farley cited the 2019 book, “How to Be an Anti-Racist,” by prominent critical race theory advocate Ibram X. Kendi.
“[Kendi] reminds us that “anti-racist actions must remove racist policies,” Farley said at the time. “Policies must therefore first be identified, either because they contain racist content or because they contribute to racist outcomes. And while most of our state evaluation requirements in Oregon be based on the federal government and federal law, the state board and assessment team are critical in this discussion, given the continued influence on policy and practice in Oregon schools.
“We work to identify racist policies and practices that we can influence so that we can disrupt them. … We do everything we can to disrupt them,” he said.
During the September 7 discussionFarley said standardized testing “was both grounded in and weaponized by white supremacist purveyors,” and that “Oregon’s standards, curriculum, instruction, and assessment focused on whiteness contributing to the results of racist education as we know it”.
Farley quoted a 2015 essay by Matthew Knoester and Wayne Au who argued that “high-stakes testing, combined with current school choice systems, function as mechanisms used for racial coding that facilitate segregation and deepen inequalities found in schools.”
Farley also quoted Gary Orfield, who argued federal education standards such as “‘No Child Left Behind” have contributed to the re-segregation of America.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
The task force comes after Democratic Governor Kate Brown signed a bill in July that removed the requirement for high school students to prove proficiency in reading, writing or math before graduating. diploma.
Farley did not respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.