How To Pass The MCAS With A Perfect Score

Massachusetts politicos and education bureaucrats are going all goofy about the high failure rate in the science section of the high stakes MCAS assessment tests, according to the lead story in today’s Globe.

Well, first, for the kids being subjected to this scam (ooo, an anagram for MCAS), if you want a perfect score take your butt to the bookstore and buy a copy of Harry Lorayne’s The Memory Book. It’s seven bucks at Amazon.

If your teacher is teaching to the test (and do they really have a choice anymore?) you’ll learn how to remember anything – quickly and easily. Add a good study plan, using techniques like those found in Tony Buzan’s Make The Most Of Your Mind and you can ace your way through high school and college.

Use those two books and no matter how bad the teacher, how useless the testing system, you will learn a lot, and you will learn it in a lot less time, leaving you considerably more time to live a life. In fact, you could probably do without school altogether and just pursue subjects you find interesting, if it weren’t for those little pieces of paper proving you went to school and got grades.

I’ll go so far as to say that Buzan and Lorayne should be taught beginning in the first grade, along with some solid training in critical thinking.

These days, all the schools aim to produce are kids who can pass multiple choice tests and make the bureaucrats look good so nobody gets upset at them.

Actual learning, genuine thinking – no no no, can’t have that. Thinkers question. Thinkers point out flaws. Thinkers act independently. Thinkers don’t take crap.

And it’s certain that the MCAS and similar high-stakes tests do not require you to think. Not seriously, anyway. All you have to do is memorize facts. You don’t have to think your way through problems. You don’t have to solve anything. Just the facts, ma’am.

Which you will forget as soon as the test is over because the whole point of your education, as currently construed, is to pass the test. You don’t have to learn biology or chemistry or math or English. Just some facts about them. You don’t have to think, which is a good thing because schools do not provide you with the tools of thinking.

You also won’t have to get excited  enough about a subject to develop a passion for it, a real desire to know more, to probe deeply into it, to maybe make a life of it.

Nope. All you gotta do is pass the test and go on to live the life of a drone in the corporate hive.

The MCAS is a tool for bureaucrats. It gives them numbers that quantify education for bigger bureaucrats who decide who gets money and who gets smacked around. It’s got nothing to do with education. It’s got to do with the stupefying of American childrens’ minds. And you can take ‘stupefying’ in the pun sense and the actual sense.

For a sample of MCAS questions, here’s some the Globe picked. And here’s one of my favorites, from the Physics test:

A car is parked on the side of a hill. Which of the following most likely prevents the car from moving down the hill?

  • A. The car has too much mass to move easily.
  • B. There is friction in the door hinges of the car.
  • C. There is friction between the tires and the road.
  • D. The weight of the car is mostly on the front wheels.

Of course, none of them will stop the car if the parking brake is off. I guess that’s the thinking part. Is the brake on or off? If it’s on, then the friction in the braking system holds the car in place, unless the tires are frictionless, thus allowing the car to slide down the hill anyway. I think the answer should be E. Friction. The test answer is C. The question itself is, well… bureaucratic.

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  1. […] or surpassing them than ever before …http://www.eagletribune.com/punews/local_story_278115612How To Pass The MCAS With A Perfect Score Massachusetts politicos and education bureaucrats are going all goofy about the high failure rate […]

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