Skip to main content

KPBS Radio is undergoing scheduled upgrade work which may result in temporary signal outages.

LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 | Vaccines | Tokyo Olympics

California Won’t Lose Federal Funds For Testing

California won't be sanctioned for forgoing its old, multiple-choice standardized tests in favor of pilot testing new online exams in the state's public schools this year.

California will not face federal penalties for its plan to scrap the state’s old standardized tests in favor of having students try out new online exams this year.

The U.S. Department of Education has given California the waiver from federal testing requirements the state has been asking for since the fall. As much as $3.5 billion was at stake.

The waiver comes just ahead of the March 18 start to the period for schools to test new online state exams.

Next year California will make the official switch to the new tests, which have open-ended questions and require students to cite evidence from materials they read or watch as part of the exam

“It gives schools and staff an opportunity to determine what they may need to do differently in terms of how they have students interact with technology in the classroom," said Deborah Sigman, deputy superintendent of the California Department of Education's District, School and Innovation Branch. "The purpose of the field test is to build an operational test for next year.”

Critics argue California is skirting school accountability by not publishing test results for this school year. Sigman says the online pilot tests won’t report student results, just information on how well each test item worked.

FEATURED PODCAST

San Diego News Now podcast branding

San Diego news; when you want it, where you want it. Get local stories on politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings. Hosted by Anica Colbert and produced by KPBS, San Diego and the Imperial County's NPR and PBS station.

  • Need help keeping up with the news that matters most? Get the day's top news — ranging from local to international — straight to your inbox each weekday morning.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Curious San Diego banner

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.