I hate SOL's. They are so not a representation of who a child is and yet, so much weight is put on it. Kiddo was suppose to have her first one today.
We've told that child at least a zillion times that we don't believe in the SOL's (she does know we very much believe in a great education and giving her all at school, just not concerned about the silly test).
We've reassured her over and over again to just go in and do her best, not stress and no matter the score, she's loved.
Yesterday her and I had a little talk and I wrote her a letter in more detail. I told her I didn't want her feeling like I was lecturing about school, so I put my thoughts on paper, but short version was not to stress, it's just not that important in the scheme of things.
I also reitterated that school itself is very important, it's just not about the tests. It's about using what you learn to deal with life. She is so resilient and proven so with all that she's had happen in the past, so of course we have high expectations.
She giggled at a few points of the letter (like my example of having to be respectful to adults not having to do with submission but learning not to let emotions rule and learning to problem solve)
I had even signed the slip about testing saying not to re-test her if she didn't pass the test. My idea behind that was to show her that it wasn't a big enough issue to make it worth spending a ton of time on. She requested I redo it to let her re-test. She said if she got a 399 and suppose to get 400, she'd WANT to take it again and pass, that she knew she could do it. I couldn't have been prouder at that moment.
I'm so proud of all she's done and I never want her feeling like one day at school means the whole year was a waste. She's so afraid if she fails the test that she will have to go to summer school and that'd mean no Tybee Island. I explained that's not the case.
All that said, imagine what some of these kids that have all this anxiety over the test thought today. Kiddo came home this afternoon and they didn't get to take the test. Of all the weird things, their server went down and she couldn't take the test.
She seems to be taking it well, but if I was prepared for a big day and and the day didn't happen, it'd probably be anxiety ridden.