Friday, April 17, 2015

How Tennessee Requires Students Who Opt-Out to "Sit and Stare"

The following is a communication a parent in Tennessee received from an official in her school district claiming that there is no legal right to Opt Out of tests in that state and that students who refuse to take the tests must sit in the room with the test takers. In short, she claims the state mandates "Sit and Stare"

Dear ..........,

After I emailed you yesterday, all superintendents received further communication from the State Department of Education attorney regarding parents' desire to have their students opted out of TCAP testing. I am attaching her memo to this communication. Your daughter will not be able to sit in the office and read during the TCAP testing. According to the memo from the attorney, that would put us in a position of allowing her to opt out of testing and there is no legal provision for that. Therefore, your daughter will need to sit for the test with the rest of the students. Please feel free to communicate with Christy Ballard, the attorney for the State Department of Education, should you want to further express your concerns. We are following the rules laid out for us.



This represents an outrageous infringement of parental rights as well as an effort to clamp down on the growing revolt against excessive testing and the inappropriate use of tests to rate teachers, administrators, and schools


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