Opting Out of State Testing – State’s Official Position

There has been some talk in the media, on social networking, and face-to-face about students (via their parents) opting out of state-mandated annual assessments. I wanted to briefly pass along to you the official position of Michigan’s State Superintendent and Board of Education.

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Our school district is measured under the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law on these annual mandated assessments. While I personally believe they waste a lot of valuable learning time, serve to narrow the curriculum, and utilize state and school resources that would better serve your children while spending time learning valuable 21st century skills, the fact remains that we are required by law to administer them. Should your child’s school not meet or exceed 95% of students in any grade level or subgroup completing these tests, the school will receive the lowest grade (RED) possible signifying it as a “failing school.”

If you have questions, please bring them to your child’s principal or feel free to contact me in the district administration office. You can also read the parent information on M-Step, the new name for Michigan’s annual assessments, at (PDF reader required):

http://www.michigan.gov/documents/mde/M-STEP_Parent_Letter_485249_7.pdf

Thank you.

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About David Britten

Retired U.S. Army Officer, former elementary, middle and high school principal, currently serving as a public school superintendent.
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