The Board just passed Policy 511 (passed 5-1) only Katie Groth voted against it. It is going to put into writing a refusal policy for students which creates the option for students to refuse assessments. It also requires administrators to create alternative activities and has an expectation that all schools will do the same thing, there will be continuity across our system. I spoke against it because implementation by teachers and administrators is unrealistic. Everyone will bend over backwards and it will create a burden on teachers and test coordinators.
The Board modified the proposal to say that “If a school administrator is able to provide an alternative activity, it must align with testing protocol.” If there is no paper, pencil, books, etc. allowed in a testing room, then how is there and activity? IF there is no refusal allowed by the State Board, then how are the students not in the testing room? Really looking forward to seeing how principals enact this.
1 – no two schools will do the same thing. No two schools have the same resources or staff to make it all happen the same way.
2 – the state of Maryland does not have a refusal policy and the Frederick County Board of Education now does. Interesting.
3 – while I fully agree that the state should have passed Ben’s Law and I believe parents should have options to speak for their children. Right now the State Board does not have any guidelines to allow that. This is a fight for the General Assembly.