Beyond the Standardized Testing

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The solution for a better future

Four years ago, the General Assembly from The United Nations gathered to discuss ways to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. After a myriad of research and countless hours of debate, the General Assembly agreed that the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will aid us to reach the goal of a better future. In general, the SDGs aim to solve global challenges such as inequality, poverty, climate, and environmental degradation.

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The fourth SDG is ‘Quality Education’” ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education, and promoting lifelong learning opportunities for all (Martin, 2015). The UN says Access to inclusive education can help equip locals with the tools required to develop innovative solutions to the world’s greatest problems(2015). In other words, the fourth goal, Quality Education, is the foundation of other Sustainable Development Goals; if we can augment the educational quality, especially for the underdeveloped and secluded communities, the future generation would break from the poverty cycle and would be more aware of the global challenges, thus continue the effort for a better future. The Quality Education will create a higher chance for the future generation to initiate prominent solutions against the ascending global problems. The UN is positive that if we can offer quality education without leaving anyone behind (2015), it will become a key for securing sustainability of our actions for a better future and reaching the other SDGs. I strongly agree with this statement; the world is slowly but surely approaching the goal of Quality Education”the solution for a better and sustainable future.

According to the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS Data Centre), since 2000, the percentage of out-of school children among primary school has declined from 40% to 22% in sub-Saharan Africa and from 20% to 6% in South Asia. Moreover, enrollment in primary education in developing countries has reached 91 percent. For the first time in 2017, the percentage of the American population age 25 and older that completed high school or higher levels of education reached 90 percent (Bureau, 2018, p. 2). The statistics show that more children and young adults are attending school to get secondary education globally. However, there is a long way to go. Just to name three major educational challenges, the UN statistics show us that there are over 265 million children who do not attend school; one school out of seven is over-crowded; the educational gap between rich and poor has worsened 21% since 2008. Therefore, the positive statistics alone cannot confirm whether we are getting closer to the goal of Quality Education: a better assessment system is needed.

The accurate assessment system

In response to emerging educational challenges, the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), signed in 2002 by former President George W.

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