“The SAT Isn’t What’s Unfair”

“MIT brings back a test that, despite its reputation, helps low-income students in an inequitable society.” By Kathryn Paige Harden; The Atlantic

“…But the income-related disparities we see in SAT scores are not evidence of an unfair test. They are evidence of an unfair society. The test measures differences in academic preparedness, including the ability to write a clear sentence, to understand a complex passage, and to solve a mathematical problem. The SAT doesn’t create inequalities in these academic skills. It reveals them. Throwing the measurement away doesn’t remedy underlying injustices in children’s academic opportunities, any more than throwing a thermometer away changes the weather…”

Our chronic pursuit of the wrong, most likely politically easier and more “sexy” targets in public education’s unmitigated failures (e.g., common core standards, standardized exams, integration, Asian students, White teachers, etc.) always produces inadequate and very expensive but grossly unhelpful corrective efforts.
Clearly, we must go to the source of the problem: Disenfranchised students receive unequal, inferior, uninspiring, and intellectually diminished K-12 quality educational experiences (this deficient exposure includes those disenfranchised students who are on or above grade and performance levels).
Moreover, this pedagogy of unpreparedness provides these unfortunate students with a minimal set of options when entering our national economic life, one major role being the raw material for our widely expansive criminal justice system. But the genuine transformational change that is needed in our K-12 schools would require a type of political courage that champions the cause of our society’s politically weakest and poorest members, not the best career or consultancy resume builder in a systemic structure where maintaining the status quo (only ‘tweaking’ the non-critical outer edges), is the fundamental (unstated) organizational and operational objective.

Full Atlantic Article: https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2022/04/mit-admissions-reinstates-sat-act-tests/629455/