Proposed Smarter Balanced suspension under consideration

  • Posted: Monday, April 7, 2014 9:40 p.m.

Late last week, the State Department of Education notified school districts statewide that the department was suspending the implementation of a new testing assessment called Smarter Balanced.

However, it isn’t necessarily so. Via email on Monday, Barry Boelen, the State Board of Education chairman, said the State Department acted prematurely.

“The State Department cannot pull out of Smarter Balanced Consortium without the State Board of Education approving the recommendation,” Bolen said in the email.

A legislative bill to remove Smarter Balanced is pending. If the bill is approved, “then the State Board will be forced to adapt a new assessment,” Bolen said.

That may or not happen, he said, but “The memo to superintendents from the State Department is obviously assuming the State Board will approve their request.”

On Wednesday, the item will be on the agenda during a State Board meeting. If the Board doesn’t approve the State Department’s action, then Smarter Balanced will resume as the state assessment for 2014-15.

Again, that could change if a legislative bill is accepted the General Assembly, Bolen said.

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