Ohio House Passes Anti-PARCC Bill

ohio-state-flagThe Columbus Dispatch reports last week that the Ohio House overwhelmingly passed a bill that would eliminate PARCC and restrict the amount of testing done in the state.

A wide-ranging bill that would eliminate the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) tests in Ohio and limit state achievement tests to three hours per year passed the House 92-1 on Wednesday.

“Clearly, the implementation of PARCC assessments are not going well and need to be replaced,” said Rep. Andrew Brenner, R-Powell. He sponsored House Bill 74, which also reduces the number of end-of-course exams that high-school students must take and blocks the PARCC consortium from submitting a proposal for replacement tests.

Brenner said his bill overlaps in some areas with the 30-member Senate Advisory Committee on Testing, which issued recommendations two weeks ago, including the scaling back of new twice-a-year tests to once a year. The Kasich administration also has recommended reducing testing times.

The House bill has some good components, said Sen. Peggy Lehner, R-Kettering, but it also contains provisions that are premature and could threaten $750 million in annual federal education funding. The federal government requires the state to assess students in English/language arts and math in grades 3-8 and again in high school.

“Some of the ways they’ve described how testing could be limited would be in direct violation of federal requirements,” Lehner said of the House bill. “We could end up with a test that doesn’t do what needs to be done.”

Update: Heidi Huber of Ohioans Against Common Core is not excited about this bill, she told me on Facebook:

All you have to do is look at the sponsor name. The lone dissenting vote was Andy Thompson, the only stalwart in our Ohio fight. The bill is not as described. Ruse #6 I believe in the Brenner series. As an example; an amendment that prohibits only a consortium assessment that was funded by ARRA. Classic. Brenner himself said the bill does nothing, but that won’t keep them from touting they killed PARCC. The federal mandate still exists and the standards are still in place. Nothing to see here but more kabuki theater. The kids be damned, there’s profit to be had.

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