Psychology clinic urges all parents to Opt Out their children from Common Core testing. Their warning applies to parents in any state which administers Common Core testing, not just Utah, which administers the Smarter Balanced Assessments without Informed Consent.
“Utah education leaders have chosen to ignore the “sacred” tenant in our field of “Informed Consent”. Common Core testing practices are neither “informed” per the dictates and requirements of science, nor do they possess the elements of “Consent” to parents as dictated by law and ethics we as private practitioners are sworn to uphold by law.”
“The conscious and deliberate choice by USOE and the Utah State Board of Education to eliminate Informed Consent from the testing process has resulted in forcing and manipulating 650,000 public school to participate inpsychological experimentation for the economic benefit of their respective political and economic interests. Recent comments and publications by USOE Associate Superintendent Judy Park regarding the issues of opting out of this test are not backed up with evidence, and is a irresponsible and manipulative misuse of power and public trust.” (e.g., see “Judy Park Introduces Common Core & Sage Tests To Wasatch School Districthttp://whatiscommoncore.wordpress.com/2013/04/08/judy-park-introduces-common-core-sage-tests-to-wasatch-school-district/).
“Given these, and many other principles not cited in this statement, it is our official position, at this time, to encourage all parents of Utah public school children to “opt out” of Common Core testing until State education leaders have learned, and committed to the practices of Informed Consent and other practices of assessment ethics as outlined by the APA. “.
“We understand the value and need of measuring achievement in public school children. We take no political or public policy stances regarding the administration of high stakes testing to Utah children, whereas such is the privy of politicians and education leaders. However, as local clinical community scientists, HOW these tests are ultimately administered is of primary importance to us, and a area of specific expertise for child psychologists. The harm for children involved in this massive violation of ethical standards are very real for children in the State of Utah, and we are treating the ill effects of such in our clinic. We admonish state leaders to immediately adjusts their practices, or face accountability for the abuse and neglect of school aged children and teens throughout the State of Utah”.
American Psychological Association Code:
9.02 Use of Assessments
(a) Psychologists administer, adapt, score, interpret or use assessment techniques, interviews, tests or instruments in a manner and for purposes that are appropriate in light of the research on or evidence of the usefulness and proper application of the techniques.
(b) Psychologists use assessment instruments whose validity and reliability have been established for use with members of the population tested. When such validity or reliability has not been established, psychologists describe the strengths and limitations of test results and interpretation.
(c) Psychologists use assessment methods that are appropriate to an individual’s language preference and competence, unless the use of an alternative language is relevant to the assessment issues.
9.03 Informed Consent in Assessments
(a) Psychologists obtain informed consent for assessments, evaluations or diagnostic services, as described in Standard 3.10, Informed Consent, except when (1) testing is mandated by law or governmental regulations; (2) informed consent is implied because testing is conducted as a routine educational, institutional or organizational activity (e.g., when participants voluntarily agree to assessment when applying for a job); or (3) one purpose of the testing is to evaluate decisional capacity. Informed consent includes an explanation of the nature and purpose of the assessment, fees, involvement of third parties and limits of confidentiality and sufficient opportunity for the client/patient to ask questions and receive answers.
(b) Psychologists inform persons with questionable capacity to consent or for whom testing is mandated by law or governmental regulations about the nature and purpose of the proposed assessment services, using language that is reasonably understandable to the person being assessed.