Stop the Airplanes, We’re Taking the MAP Test
For all of you out there who watched 2 Million Minutes and concluded that the U.S. just needs to focus more on national standards and rigorous tests, take a look at this article in the Wall Street Journal:
On the day each November that high-school seniors take the college-entrance test — Nov. 13, this year — South Korea is a changed country. Many offices and the stock market open at 10 a.m., an hour later than usual, to keep the roads free for students on their way to the test. All other students get the day off to keep schools quiet for the test takers. And while students are taking the listening portions of the tests, planes can’t land or take off at the nation’s airports. Aircraft arriving from other countries are ordered to circle at altitudes above 10,000 feet.
There’s a large cost to orienting your whole society around one test.
Asian countries must be doing something right — otherwise, their students wouldn’t be so attractive to American universities. Let’s emulate the cultural emphasis on hard work and education; we don’t need to adopt the top-down control of schools and the obsession with testing.