2 Percent

Like many, I was pleased to hear President Obama and Education Secretary Arne Duncan announce that limits are going to be placed on the amount of time spent on standardized testing.

The most concrete piece of information released is that testing time will be limited to no more than 2% of classroom time.

It sounds admirable to put limits on testing, but what does two percent look like?

My elementary-age sons have music class once per week for 45 minutes. (I know they’re lucky to have music at all in 2015!) In terms of weekly school time, this works out to just – you guessed it – 2%.

Limiting testing to 2% of class time is literally saying, we should “only” administer standardized tests for the amount of time a typical elementary student spends in music. Over an entire year.