Assessment Policy and Political Spectacle


by Mary Lee Smith, Walter Heinecke & Audrey J. Noble 1999

This paper relates the history of assessment policy in Arizona based on an extensive base of interview, observation, and archival data. In less than a decade, two radical shifts took place, from basic skills and standardized testing to progressive reform by performance testing to high-stakes standardized testing based on state standards. We argue that the shape of assessment policy and policy change had more to do with political spectacle (Edelman 1988) and the struggle for power, position, resources, and the control over public schools than with empirical or rational analysis, moral imperative or democratic debate.


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 101 Number 2, 1999, p. 157-191
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 10483, Date Accessed: 12/14/2017 11:43:49 PM

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