COLUMBUS — October 21, 2014 — The Ohio Education Association (OEA) today applauded the introduction of House Bill 642 by Representative Teresa Fedor, D-Toledo. The bill calls for a 3-year suspension of high-stakes decisions based on student test scores in measuring student growth and evaluating teacher performance.
“As Senator Peggy Lehner, the chair of the Senate Education Committee, has noted – ‘we are over-testing our kids’,” said OEA President Becky Higgins. “We urge state lawmakers to hit the pause button and determine which tests are actually needed and which are also appropriate for the grade level at which they’re being administered.”
OEA believes that with the use of the new Common Core standards in Ohio schools and the prospect of even more tests being conducted, it is important to take more time to make sure the implementation of these standards goes well.
“We’ve seen what has happened in other states where the hasty implementation of Common Core and the related testing has led to a backlash among parents, students and educators,” continued OEA President Higgins. “We support Ohio’s New Learning Standards, but we want to make sure Ohio gets it right. That’s why we think taking the time to ‘test the tests’ would be a prudent course to follow.”
Last spring, OEA members voted unanimously at their Representative Assembly to support the 3-year delay in the use of high-stakes decisions based on student test results. OEA is pleased that 18 co-sponsors have already signed on in support of Representative Fedor‘s bill.
“We recognize the need for a comprehensive assessment of student growth. But student assessments should not be overly-dependent on the results of standardized tests, “said Higgins. “Students are spending too much time preparing for and taking tests. There needs to be a more balanced approach to identifying the strengths and needs of students.”
The Ohio Education Association (ohea.org) represents 121,000 teachers, faculty members and support professionals in Ohio’s public schools, colleges and universities.
CONTACT: Michele Prater
614-227-3071; cell 614-378-0469, firstname.lastname@example.org