Georgia Board Of Education Reduces Weight Of Standardized Tests For 2020-21 School Year

State Board of Education members received plenty of feedback from parents and teachers during a 30-day public comment period.

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The state Board of Education voted unanimously Monday to change the weight of Georgia Milestones end-of-course tests to .01% for the 2020-21 school year. EOC scores usually comprise 20% of a student’s final grade in a course.

After the U.S. Education Department said it wouldn’t grant states waivers for standardized tests this year, state Schools Superintendent Richard Woods asked the board to consider reducing the weight to .01%. (State law doesn’t allow the weight to be 0%.)

Some board members balked at the idea, saying students could lose motivation if they thought their scores wouldn’t count. The board agreed to reduce the weight to 10%. However, board members received plenty of feedback from parents and teachers during the 30-day public comment period.

People urged them to reconsider, given the unusual circumstances caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

“I wish to thank the State Board of Education for their unanimous support of this proposal,” Woods said in a statement. “I firmly believe this is the right thing for kids – we must ensure students and teachers are not penalized for circumstances beyond their control.”

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) also decided to suspend the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) for the 2020-21 school year.