Gov. Brown signs law temporarily suspending graduation testing

SALEM, Ore. – Oregon schools are making national headlines. Gov. Kate Brown signed a bill recently that would temporarily eliminate a standardized test high schoolers have to take.

Senate Bill 744 allows the state to review current requirements to achieve a high school diploma. Politicians in Salem told NBC5 News they’ve had the same education standards for years. With COVID-19 impacting education the past year and a half, some people say requirements should change too, but not everyone agrees.

“What we should be demanding from the Department of Education and the school districts that are serving those students is why are you underserving those students,” said State Senator Dennis Linthicum (R – Klamath Falls).

Linthicum said rather than passing SB 744, families should have the right to choose which school their child goes to. However, State Representative Pam Marsh said this policy helps update Oregon’s education system. The test is just one aspect.

“In the education realm we’ve become more dependent on testing and three’s a lot of controversy around that. Do all students perform well on tests? Are tests good ways to measure achievement for all students,” said State Representative Pam Marsh (D-Ashland).

All other graduation requirements are still in place. That means Oregon students still have to pass all the required classes to graduate high school. After 3 years, state politicians will look at a statewide study and make changes accordingly.

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