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Politics & Government

Gov. Markell joins national school testing campaign

Markell-kids21.jpg
Delaware Public Media
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Gov. Jack Markell (D) is signing on to a so-called ‘Testing Bill of Rights’ that pushes for schools to adopt fewer, but higher quality tests to better measure kids’ progress.

“Teachers, as well as parents and policy makers, too, we all need objective measures to determine whether our students are learning and every child matters and we’ve got to, we need assessments to measure student academic growth so that none of our kids fall through the cracks," Markell said.

The new national campaign comes from the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning thinktank in Washington, D.C.

The 'Testing Bill of Rights' includes sections for students, teachers and parents, saying they should have the right to avoid excessive test prep, as well as tests that objectively measure a kid’s progress and make that data available to families.

Markell made brief remarks in a phone call with reporters Thursday morning, noting his own efforts to reduce state and local testing requirements in Delaware.

 

That initiative came after heavy pressure from parents and lawmakers to allow them to opt their children out from standardized tests without repercussions.

 

The opt-out legislation ultimately failed, vetoed by Markell - but in response, the governor replaced the Smarter Balanced Assessment with the SAT for high school juniors.

He also set up a testing inventory committee.  Its report is due by June 30.