According to a recent announcement by the U.S. Department of Education, schools in all states must administer standardized performance exams. The state schools are required to administer standardized tests from grades three to eight.
According to United States Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, it is very important to assess the students through a formal exam and it is up to the schools when they administer the exams this year.
The education departments in different states are yet to decide whether to administer the exams remotely or if the schools can delay the exams until summer and wait for the pandemic to end. It is also decided that schools won’t have to be liable for the bad performance of the students this year.
With the United States COVID-19 death toll hitting the 500,000 marks, the decision of reopening schools is still in limbo. The issues of reopening of schools and standardized testing have triggered serious debates.
The decision has been supported by many educationists, including Dr. Carissa Moffat Miller the CEO of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). She is of the view that standardized testing is necessary to assess the performance of the students. And when most of the parents surveyed also supported the need for standardized testing for their children.
Federal testing standards were designed to uplift schools in areas that were behind in delivering performance and their students were not performing well.
The standardized tests were designed to ensure a state-level annual assessment of the students to determine that school education is in alignment with the federal and state standards.
Following the recent announcement, Ian Rosenblum, Assistant Education Secretary has also announced that there would be ‘blanket waivers’ in terms of annual assessment and students must take standardized tests.