Home > Uncategorized > About the Bixby Opt Out Policy

About the Bixby Opt Out Policy

March 12, 2014

In case you missed it, the Bixby Public Schools Board of Education adopted an Opt Out policy Monday night. This is a response to increased questions from parents about getting their children out of state and federally mandated standardized tests. Before anybody starts an ill-advised investigation, however, we should understand what this policy is and what it is not.

It is a way to inform parents that the district respects their rights and the potential consequences to the student, school, and district if those rights are exercised. It is not an obscene gesture pointed to the southwest.

The district contacted the SDE for legal advice and was told that the district has an obligation to provide a test to every student in tested grades and subjects. The consequences, as outlined in the form that parents would have to complete (which discourages opting out) are outlined by the Tulsa World:

• Oklahoma law requires that a third-grader score proficient or higher on the reading test or be retained in third grade. “There is nothing in the law that would allow for the promotion of those students (who don’t take the test)” unless they meet one of the six good cause exemptions that aren’t predicated on taking the test first, said education department Tricia Pemberton.

• Oklahoma law requires that any person under age 18 to demonstrate score satisfactory on the 8th grade reading test to get an Oklahoma drivers’ license.

• And Oklahoma law now requires students demonstrate mastery of state academic content standards by scoring proficient or higher on four of seven end-of-instruction standardized tests.

Wood also said parents are informed that the school district and its schools’ grades are based on testing. A district is required under the state’s A-F school grading system to test at least 95 percent of enrolled students or drop one letter grade. If 90 percent or fewer students are tested, the district receives an automatic “F.”

There could also be federal funding consequences if the appropriate numbers of students are not tested.

The policy provides parents with information and choices – nothing more, nothing less. That sounds pragmatic and shows parents that the district wants them to think for themselves.

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  1. okteacher
    March 12, 2014 at 8:28 am

    Good for them! I congratulate Bixby on taking a stand and basically telling the SDE to kiss it.

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  2. March 12, 2014 at 9:09 am

    I think they have done of great job clarifying the consequences for the school while supporting the rights and needs of the child/parent. At this point, it is civil disobedience. I am not sure if enough parents will opt out to cause the district grade to drop, but if a handful of A/B schools drop to F because of parents speaking out against testing, that would speak very loudly to our elected officials.

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  3. Fred
    March 12, 2014 at 9:16 am

    So the party of smaller government, less government interference, and “local Control” is FORCING parents to make their children take these tests. Yet the educators who teach these same children, say the tests are not developmentally appropriate, nor are they designed for the purpose in which they are being used. The
    EOI tests are not designed as eacher evaluation tools yet they are being used as such. Also the 3rd grade test is not designed to measure reading level, yet it is being used as such. What a travesty.

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  4. Roger Hill
    March 12, 2014 at 9:37 pm

    Sent from my iPad

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  5. joeddins
    March 22, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    What about loss of electives if student fails or opts- out ?

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  1. March 12, 2014 at 4:58 pm
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