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Dozens Call for an End to “High Stakes Testing”

Posted: October 05, 2012|Category: Students' Rights

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Dozens of parents, students, educators and community groups, including the ACLU, attended a meeting of the Board of Regents for Elementary and Secondary Education yesterday to call for an end to the Board’s “high stakes testing” graduation requirement, scheduled to first affect the Class of 2014. Speakers pointed out the devastating impact the requirement would have on disadvantaged populations – including students with disabilities, racial minorities, the poor, and English Language Learners – by denying them diplomas on the basis of a standardized test that was never designed for that purpose. In addition, groups pointed out that neither the standardized test being used now, nor the one scheduled to be used beginning in 2015, is an appropriate test to determine a student’s qualifications for a diploma.

The issue has taken on urgency because the Board is scheduled to be abolished in December, with a new board that will also have jurisdiction over higher education in the state to take its place. At the end of yesterday’s hearing, however, the Board of Regents’ chair indicated that he did not expect the Board to take up the issue before its abolishment. The ACLU and other concerned organizations are planning next steps.

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