As Ohio eliminates a standardized test, Kentucky adds one

WCPOPublished: August 14, 2017
Published: August 14, 2017

Ohio's standardized social studies test is history for the state's fourth and sixth graders, leaving teachers like Kim Rees with more time to focus on the curriculum they enjoy. "We'll have time for labs," Rees said. "The fun stuff is what you do away with when you have to test pep, and kids get frustrated because school isn't fun anymore." But they still do about 10 hours of test prep a week for standardized tests in other subjects, she added. A spokesperson for the Ohio Department of Education said superintendent of public instruction Paolo DeMaria did propose cuts to other standardized state tests, but the state board hasn't made recommendations to the legislature yet. Across the Ohio River, Kentucky moved in the opposite direction by introducing a new science assessment for elementary and middle schoolers, but associate commissioner Rhonda Sims said the new test is classroom-oriented. "For students, it means they have more ways to show what they know they can do," Sims said. More tests could be forthcoming -- a development Kim Rees said could create more burnout among the youngest students in the state. "When the legislatures come in and say you have to test these kids, they're not thinking about the kids and what it does to them," she said.

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