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Recent Reviews of Collateral Damage:

Collateral Damage2

From Education Review:

“Bringing together many press accounts of the negative impact of high stakes testing, Nichols and Berliner provide convincing argument that the punitive measures accompanying this testing is destroying America’s greatest invention, its public schools. What I especially like about the book is that it lays out a moral argument snuggled up next to the intellectual one, detailing why harm to children is inevitable under a system of high stakes testing and also giving brief samples of just who the harmed are—from African-American high school pushouts at the World of Opportunity in Birmingham, Alabama, to special education students in Pine Level, North Carolina; from a Vallejo City teacher to teachers in San  Antonio and West Virginia. Making good use of news clips, the book is replete with examples of children hurt and teachers professionalism undermined by high-stakes testing.”
--excerpt from review in May 2007 Education Review, reviewed by Susan Ohanian

From Teachers College Record:

“If you are looking for a synthesis that pulls together a good deal of the background literature on high stakes testing, combines it with some of the latest research on testing practices, and the myriad press accounts of the reactions to NCLB testing policies from teachers, administrators, parents, and students, then look no further than Collateral Damage: How High-Stakes Testing Corrupts America’s Schools by Sharon Nichols and David Berliner. Nichols and Berliner have marshaled a wealth of information to support their contention that high-stakes testing, far from having the uplifting effects promised by advocates and the policy makers who have embraced it as a reform lever for U.S. schools, is undermining the educational system and corrupting all those who are touched by it.”
--excerpt from review in March 2007 Teachers College Record, reviewed by Gary Natriello, executive editor of the Teachers College Record.

From Fair Test Examiner:

Collateral Damage: How High-Stakes Testing Corrupts America's Schools powerfully details the destructive effects on education of high-stakes standardized testing. Authors Sharon Nichols and David Berliner construct their case around "Campbell's Law," named for researcher Donald Campbell: "[T]he more any quantitative social indicator is used for social decision-making, the more subject it will be to corruption pressures and the more apt it will be to distort and corrupt the social processes it was intended to monitor." When standardized tests are used for graduation and promotion decisions, or required by state and federal school accountability, both education and the meaning of test scores are corrupted. …

This book is valuable for its sweep, its penetrating details, its powerful core argument focused on corruption, and its readability. It updates the now-extensive literature on the harmful consequences of high-stakes testing, including works on No Child Left Behind such as FairTest's Failing Our Children, and Leaving Children Behind, edited by Deborah Meier and George Wood.”
--excerpt from review in April 2007, Fair Test Examiner

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