Fight builds at Legislature to scrap tests to graduate

  • Article by: Jim Ragsdale , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 17, 2013 - 11:23 AM

Business groups defend minimum score to graduate.

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arspartzApr. 17, 13 8:52 AM

“Can you imagine in two years, what would happen, when we denied diplomas to 80 percent of [minority] kids based on one test score?”

Perhaps the kids would STUDY? Perhaps the parent(s) would stress that passing this test was important? Without the "stick" of failure there is no pressure on the kids to succeed.

Is it better that we allow these "kids of color" to graduate with no basic skills?

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JimBart3Apr. 17, 13 9:20 AM

Giving diplomas to students who can't meet expectations in reading, writing and math is the worst thing we can do. It'd also be nice if people who don't like using objective tests as a measure of performance just say so. 25 states with 70% of US students require kids to meet basic skills to earn a diploma - NOT 8 as Comm. Cassellius said. Research? Look at improvement in students of color passing rates on reading & writing GRAD exams - 15% in reading for African-American students ('08-'12). Tests tell us how well students are doing, it's what we do with those results that matters. Without basic expectations for performance we're just giving up on our kids.

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braxozApr. 17, 1310:04 AM

JimBart3 Apr. 17, 13 9:20 AM Giving diplomas to students who can't meet expectations in reading, writing and math is the worst thing we can do. It'd also be nice if people who don't like using objective tests as a measure of performance just say so. 25 states with 70% of US students require kids to meet basic skills to earn a diploma - NOT 8 as Comm. Cassellius said. Research? Look at improvement in students of color passing rates on reading & writing GRAD exams - 15% in reading for African-American students ('08-'12). Tests tell us how well students are doing, it's what we do with those results that matters. Without basic expectations for performance we're just giving up on our kids._________________ Like Atlanta?

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lesluethmersApr. 17, 1310:26 AM

Why are teachers and mostly unions so afraid of these test? Parents need to get involved with their kids education. Stop blaming the teacher when little Johnny fails. Education starts at home. When you give kids a pass even when they can not pass a basic graduate test it only hurts them and our economy.

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townewApr. 17, 1311:41 AM

"[Weaver] objects, however, to elimination of a minimum score students have to earn to graduate, calling it a vital issue for Minnesota’s future business growth.” What is wrong with any business setting their own levels of competency, as colleges do, if it is so important to them? I’m always amazed at some people ignore the obvious. If to many employers the diplomas are worthless, then they could ask for ACT scores, for instance, of applicants instead of a diploma. That way a business can decide what level of competency they want/require rather than depending on what a state or school district decides for them.

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sevengenApr. 17, 1312:22 PM

I'm sure the "testing business" is among the coalition of business people fighting to keep the tests going. The math test is not "basic" math, by the way. Also, the argument (and it comes from parents, students and education experts) is that there are TOO MANY

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Bad horseApr. 17, 13 1:06 PM

The 11th Grade MCA is more difficult than the ACT test. I challenge any of you to google the practice test and attempt this test. MN has the highest ACT scores in the nation, but only 40% of our state can pass the 11th grade math exam. THE TEST IS BROKEN!

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angryteacherApr. 17, 13 9:44 PM

The test IS mor difficult than the ACT test. The content (trigonometry and higher algebra) is material that most college degrees don't require. Most college degrees require college algebra at the highest. That's comparable to Algebra II in high school. My high school has cut all accounting and business classes. They are deemed not necessary because they are not tested by the state. Aren't they a crucial part of the business world? The reality is that we are not pumping out engineers, but in a global economy we are consumers rather than designers anyway. We've already outsourced production and manufacturing jobs for decades because it means cheaper production costs. Now, it seems, we want to have everyone be engineers and math majors. Also, if education isn't valued at home a stressful test won't cure that.

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pjhawk95Apr. 17, 1311:12 PM

“About 80 percent of kids of color don’t pass,” --- would anyone like to take a stab at explaining this abysmal statistic? angryteacher your insight would be appreciated.

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pjhawk95Apr. 17, 1311:21 PM

“About 80 percent of kids of color don’t pass,” --- would anyone like to take a stab at explaining this abysmal statistic? angryteacher your insight would be appreciated.

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