New bill would outline Common Core opt out standards

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A local assemblyman is pushing for a bill that would allow New York students to opt out of the state tests that are based on Common Core.

Some teachers believe Common Core standards bring a level of sophistication to the classroom. But Assembly member Jim Tedisco said it carries too much emphasis on testing without enough parent input. His new bill could change that.

“What we’d like to do is starve the beast,” he said.

The bill is called the Common Core Parental Refusal Act. It would require all districts to notify parents that they can refuse the tests. It also protects teachers and schools from being penalized for lack of participation.

“We stop this madness and bring what I would call common sense to common core,” Tedisco said.

A parent opting their child out of standardized tests is nothing new, but many feared doing so would negatively impact a school district’s state aid or teacher evaluation. But the bill would state that can’t happen.

“Our bill says they must inform the parents that they can refuse to have their kids take thist test without penalty or reward,” Tedisco said.

But how do colleges weigh in?

SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher published an editorial with colleagues in Maryland and California supporting high stakes tests. They wrote most high school tests are not rigorous enough to determine if students are college ready.

But Tedisco argues the tests are designed as one size fits all.

“Let’s face it,” he said. “The people who, the companies who grade these tests and provide these tests are multi-billion dollar companies. They have a vested interest in creating more tests.”

The bill is currently in the education committee, and then it will go to the floor for a vote.

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