Ravitch reports on an article that appeared in Education Week, where 'testing expert W. James Popham explains why the current wave of assessments are fundamentally flawed. He writes: Today's educational tests are intended to satisfy three primary purposes, all of which can play a constructive role in students' education: to compare, to instruct, and to evaluate. All three of these purposes, if implemented by using appropriate tests, can benefit students. The trouble is that one of those purposes—comparison—has completely dominated America’s educational testing for almost a century. Why are we so obsessed with wanting to compare children? Does it really matter if your son or daughter in Michigan has a higher or lower score than someone of the same age in Texas or Maine?This is the silliest possible misuse of educational testing, and the least valuable.'