Q: Will Opting Out lower school funding?
A: Short answers, no it will not. State testing is simply for evaluation purposes, the result of opting out will place a “In need of improvement” tag onto the school. Frankly, we know our schools are in need of improvement, they are riddled with archaic evaluation systems and lack the proper funding for students to receive a quality education, we don’t need a test to tell us this.
Q: Can my child/children graduate if they Opt Out?
A: Yes students can still graduate. Passing scores on the Reading, Math, and Writing tests are required for graduation. If students opt-out, students will need to prove proficiency in an alternative way for these tests. This is the list of alternative options! Students are also suppose to take the Science test, however, they do not need to prove proficiency on the Science test to graduate. With that said, we recommend everyone opt-out of the science test, especially if you want to participate in the protest but are concerned about graduating.
Q:These alternatives tests are simply other standardized tests, how does that help your message?
A: Great question, in no way do we want to endorse these alternative standardized tests, however, as proficiency must be proved for students to graduate, we are suggesting that students prove proficiency through these alternative tests. In order to send a greater message about standardized state testing we are choosing to opt-out of the OAKS tests as they are tests that directly waste class time, and are used as a form of evaluation of our schools. However, these alternative tests are 1. not required for graduation, and 2. actually beneficial to a student’s lives. The SAT and ACT are often required when students apply to college, and AP and IB tests are beneficial to students in earning college credit. These tests are beneficial to students in comparison to the OAKS test that literally have zero benefit to students.
Q. I want to be part of the protest however I can’t afford to take the alternative tests, is this protest limiting to me?
A. Absolutely not. Again, the Science OAKS test is not required for graduation, so you do not need an alternative way to prove proficiency, therefore you can easily be part of the protest by simply opting out of that test. Schools also offer the PSAT to Sophomores, and the ACT to Juniors for free. Check in with your counselor to see if your PSAT scores are high enough to prove proficiency. Otherwise, refuse to take the OAKS test until after you’ve taken the ACT and gotten your scores back. If you have passing ACT scores then you’re clear, if not, you will be able to take the OAKS test at that point. In the case that you need money to pay for alternative tests do not hesitate to ask. We have a fund started so that we can pay for students to take these alternative tests. Contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org