Standardized test tutoring is a distinct advantage; all should get it or use new testing methods.
I am of the age group who attended K-12 before the SAT test first became a “thing”; long before it became for students and parents, “The Thing” or “Such a Thing”.
In fact I was a student at a middle school that was picked to test, the test. Many schools were chosen across the country, but only one grade common to each school; 8th grade.
We were told that this wouldn’t at all affect our current grades, so for most it was just “fun”. We never imagined the impact on our future lives, once the tests were made official policy before we came of age to take them…
Two different standardized tests; first the military’s still developing “ASVAB”; figuring out what you might be naturally gifted at doing, or at very least trainable to do. The military writes all of their field and equipment operation manuals at an 8th grade reading level, so that just made sense.
The other tests we were given, not knowing they would cumulatively become the SAT, I can’t vouch for the reason they picked us other than we’d already been indoctrinated and practiced in taking standardized tests, from several rounds of the ASVAB prototypes.
Plus, back then “Number Two Pencils” were something we’d usually have on our person any given day.
So went went from “Which of these tools do not belong with the others?” and “Which of these folded boxes would look like the unfolded box shown?”, to “How many consonants are in the English Language?” and “Which of these needs sunlight to live?”
I think we did three evolutions of the ASVAB, but five for the SAT; different subjects covered by the test.
Pertinent to this story, I can attest that from having so much practice in the repetition of question formation styles and answer order patterns, by the time the school year was over all but the incorrigibly casual or illiterate could have scored in a respectable percentile of the SAT scores, no matter what question lists they chose. 8th graders…
As for the military’s ASVAB, if they’d had desktop computers, I would’ve been doing some job in that for my entire career, if I’d so chosen.
What this reveals to me is that if any student is lucky enough to have parents with enough fundage and commitment to send them to three sessions of standardized test tutoring, if the kid has half a brain that experience will make up well for any weaknesses they might accumulate in the subjects tested.
If the test is the standard, those who study the test gain ground on the natural geniuses. May never match them, but may at least attend the same schools.
If there is enough of a racial and/or economic advantage to divide students by their access to this kind of tutoring, the ones who have access will do better than those who don’t have it.
Perhaps, if they abjectly insist on retaining the test(s) as “The Standard”, professional tutoring being subsidized for all those who can’t pay might help to balance the results a bit more fairly.
“In case finding a better method of testing is still just ‘too much work’”…