Republican Assemblyman Jim Tedisco has submitted legislation that would require schools to notify parents of their right to refuse standardized Common Core testing for their children.
The process of opting out of Common Core testing, though on the rise in New York, has sometimes proven murky, confusing, and frustrating for parents.
The purpose of the new legislation reads thusly:
The purpose of this bill is to ensure school districts notify parents of students via written communication in grades three through eight that such students may refuse to participate in all state testing provided by Pearson Incorporated or any other State testing based on Common Core standards.
With the new bill, schools will be required to inform families of their rights when it comes to test refusal, along with a response form ensuring that those rights have been viewed.
Part of the justification for the legislation reads:
Both parents and teachers have expressed concern over the direction testing of our children has taken in New York State and in particular in regards to how such testing of the new Common Core standards is being applied along with the high stakes associated with the results of such tests. These high-stakes, standardized, Common Core tests have been widely considered a fatally flawed proxy for genuine evaluation. In the year 2014 alone, parents of 60,000 students refused New York State Common Core tests.
This bill codifies that parents receive proper notification of their rights as it relates to refusing to have their children participate in these field tests.
The Common Core Parental Refusal Act will prevent schools and teachers from being penalized based on the number of students who opt out. Students too, will neither be punished or rewarded based on their participation, or lack thereof, in the standardized testing.
The Mental Recession recently reported on two New York teachers who have vowed themselves to opt out of Common Core testing, with one hoping such actions would implode the system, while the other simply refused to set her students up for failure.
Last year, reports indicated that the number of kids opting out was having an effect on schools, with participation rates putting districts on peril of losing federal grant money.
According to Tedisco’s Facebook page, the Common Core Parental Refusal Act currently has over 30 sponsors in the Assembly.