Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Common Core Opt-Out Students Punished

More parents than ever are choosing for their children to opt out of the ridiculous Common Core standardized tests. School administrators are asking themselves what to do with all the opt-out students during these tests. In some schools, students are forced to sit quietly with no alternative activity allowed while others take the tests. Even young students are not allowed to read or draw. In many cases parents are not permitted to keep students at home on test days on the threat of their child being punished for truancy. Because of these punishments, administrators of many schools have been flooded with emails demanding that they stop making students just sit and stare.

Supporters of the “Sit and Stare” punishment claim that allowing the child to read or draw would be a reward for not taking the test. However, administrators are already punishing opt-out students in many ways, including restricting them from certain privileges and not allowing them to participate in class parties or end-of-the-year events. No student should be punished for exercising his right to opt-out of these tests, and to restrict these children from reading is ridiculous.

Reading is exactly what schools should be telling kids to do. Reading should be a central part of every child’s education experience. This is just another example of how public schools are losing sight of what is their true purpose. Because of Common Core, many schools teach only the material that teachers believe will be on the tests. They fail to construct lesson plans based on what students should actually be learning to become well-educated and productive members of society. Teachers should be freed from these unnecessary tests so that students can be encouraged to read, instead of punished by forcing them to just sit and stare.

Listen to the radio commentary here:

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