The Florida Legislature is listening.
The Tampa Bay Times reported today that some testing reform is likely in the next legislative session. The article ‘School testing poised to get scaled back by Florida lawmakers’ cites several tentative proposals for reforming assessment practices in Florida. Senator John Legg acknowledges that testing has grown for many well intentioned reasons, but ” …one question got waylaid: How is it affecting the students?”
Proposals are surfacing, but they are ‘logistical’ rather than substantive thus far. Rep. Manny Diaz mentioned the need to have end of course exams at the end of the course, not a month before. Rep. Erik Fresen suggested that exam proctors do not need to be certified teachers. Another suggestion was to use a single exam for multiple purposes to reduce number of tests.
More ideas are forthcoming. Senator Bill Montford is reported to be working on a testing reform bill. His bill in the 2014 session, SB1368, to suspend the implementation of test scores for student promotion, graduation etc. died in committee. There is no indication that a phase in of the impact test scores on students, teachers, or schools is being considered. Commissioner Pam Stewart is scheduled to make recommendations on testing reform to the legislature by December 30, 2014.