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Why You Can Boycott Standardized Tests Without Fear of Federal Penalties to Your School (Updated February 2018)

Parents and students often fear the threat that if they opt out of state exams, their school could lose funding. However, this is an empty threat: no school has lost funding because of opting out.

In fact, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) specifically authorizes states to allow parents to opt their children out of exams. Ten states (Alaska, California, Colorado, Idaho, North Dakota, Minnesota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah and Wisconsin) have laws specifically allowing parents to opt their children out. None has ever been sanctioned.

Testing Resistance & Reform News: January 18 - 24, 2017

The pace of assessment reform news accelerates with legislatures back in session and annual school testing drawing near. Many states are beginning to use their new flexibility under ESSA as parents, students, teachers, supervisors, school board members and community activists push for major reductions in standardized exam mandates.

National States Balance Ambitious and Achievable in ESSA Plans
http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2017/01/18/states-balance-ambitious-an...

Just Say No to Standardized Tests: Why and How to Opt Out (Updated March 2017)

Just Say No to Standardized Tests:

Why and How to Opt Out

Testing overuse and misuse is damaging public education. It eats up classroom time, narrows curriculum and drives many students out of school. It perpetuates a false narrative of failure and puts schools in low-income communities at risk of closure or privatization.

Graduation Test Update: States That Recently Eliminated or Scaled Back High School Exit Exams (Updated June 2017)

Graduation Test Update:

States That Recently Eliminated or Scaled Back High School Exit Exams

The number of states requiring high school graduation exams in language arts and math has significantly shrunk over the past few years. Thirteen states have graduation tests in place for the high school class of 2017, down from a high of 27 that had or planned such tests. The current number is the lowest level since at least the mid-1990s.

Time to Abolish High School Graduation Tests (Updated February 2017)

"Time to Abolish High School Graduation Tests" explains in two pages how and why mandated high school exit tests damage students and the quality of education. These tests deny diplomas to tens of thousands of students, disproportionately children of color, immigrants or youth with special needs; they do not improve college or career prospects but feed the school-to-prison pipeline; new Common Core tests are likely to increase the dropout rate; and more.

Testing Resistance & Reform News: January 11 - 17, 2017

As FairTest's first-generation leaders move toward retirement., the organization has begun the process of planning for a smooth transition. The first step is hiring a consultant to develop a new strategic plan to make the assessment reform movement even more effective. Working with current staff, board, and other stakeholders, the ideal candidate will also be interested in taking over as FairTest's executive director in 2018.  For details, see:

Implementing Performance Assessment: FairTest Webinar

 

Join us for a webinar on Feb 12, 2017 at 8:00 PM EST.

Register now!

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3706654188322704899

Position Available: Full-Time Strategic Planning Consultant/Potential Executive Director

Full-Time Strategic Planning Consultant/Potential Executive Director

Take-charge visionary sought to develop strategic action plan for national advocacy organization rooted in education and civil rights issues as its current leadership heads toward retirement. Our ideal candidate will have the desire to succeed the outgoing executive director.

Testing Resistance & Reform News: January 4 - 10, 2017

A reporter, who called FairTest today for a comment on a breaking story, said it well, "Every time I read your news clip compilations, I'm shocked at how much testing reform activity is going on across the country." We hope these weekly summaries are just as helpful in making your work more productive. Please send us links to articles and resources from your local area that merit broader attention.

National How Testing Policies Have to Change in U.S. Public Schools

Testing Resistance & Reform News: December 28, 2016 - January 3, 2017

Happy New Year!  Assessment reformers across the U.S. are gearing up for winning campaigns in 2017 around three central goals:

       Fewer standardized exams, leaving additional time for teaching and learning
       No high-stakes (mis)uses of test results to make major decisions about students, educators, schools or districts
       More space to create performance-based assessments that tap a broader, deeper range of knowledge and skills

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