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Moving Forward on Standardized Test Reform

This week, the NC Chamber sent a letter to the chairman of the State Board of Education and the chairs of the Task Force on Summative Assessments. The task force has been busy creating recommendations on how to reform the state’s standardized testing program, and they are making progress.

The NC Chamber’s letter follows up on our February presentation to the task force. We recommended that the state move to a more comprehensive, open Request for Information (RFI) process to identify new test vendors. Other states have used an RFI to get a better idea of testing options that fit their needs. The task force has been reporting on its progress to the full state board. Several important points have been identified, including:

  • Creating a better testing environment is not just about statewide tests. Students also spend many hours taking preparation tests and benchmarks that are selected at the local district level.
  • A better testing environment will include a focus on tests that provide usable data for improving teaching and learning.

The task force is making great progress to improve the testing situation in North Carolina. The next step is to take a more thorough look at all the options that are available. We will maintain active engagement with both the SBOE Task Force on Summative Assessments and the Academic Standards Review Commission to ensure accountability and high educational achievement.

We’ll keep you updated on their progress.

Gary J. Salamido
Vice President, Government Affairs
North Carolina Chamber