ISSUE | STUDENT TESTING

It could get worse

The opt-out movement has had a real impact, with more parents refusing the tests for their children ("As testing increases, so do calls for an end," Sunday). Even President Obama has spoken out about the negative impact of over-testing.

But the testing industry is striking back: The new plan is to replace end-of-year standardized tests with what could be daily testing. The core of education will consist of modules of programmed instruction that students will work through online and be tested on, which will drastically diminish the role of teachers and increase profits of technology companies. The new federal K-12 education law that ends No Child Left Behind announced grants for the development of these teach-and-test machines.

The National Governor's Association has admitted that there is little evidence supporting this major shift to what it calls "competency-based education," yet has enthusiastically supported it.

|Stephen Krashen, professor emeritus, University of Southern California, Los Angeles