A large part of teacher evaluations are based on student performance, including performances on standardized tests. As a result of this pressure, teachers end up teaching to the test and not teaching anything else. School should be a place where children go to learn all relevant knowledge for life, where they can have time to socialize, where they can have fun. Yes, school is supposed to be challenging, but it's not supposed to be miserable. More and more young students (ages 5-11) are experiencing a curriculum that contains only information that will be on standardized tests. 8 year olds don't have time in the curriculum to take a day off and throw a winter holiday party. Not having time for fun activities shouldn't be a thing children have to experience. Teachers across the board are focusing more on the typical standardized tests subjects such as math, reading, and writing, and are subsequently leaving the subjects of social studies, science, and the arts in the dust. In order for students to learn what kind of career they might want, they must be allowed to explore all options, not be handed only a few choices and forced to decide from there.
[P1] Standardized tests are required in most developed countries. [P2] There are only a few subjects (math, reading, writing) that typically appear on standardized tests. [P3] Teachers tend to focus heavily on those few subjects, and therefore, teach to the test.