Parents Express Concern Over Ohio Achievement Assessments

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UPDATED: Wednesday April 9, 2014 5:29 PM

A group of Columbus parents have come together with the same concern about their children's education.

They believe there are too many tests, and plan to have their children not take the Ohio Achievement Assessments.

The Ohio Achievement Assessments for third through eighth grade students are supposed to measure what children know in various subjects.

According to the Ohio Department of Education, a parent can opt-out of having their child take state assessments but says there are consequences.

The parents have a petition on Change.org.

It calls on parents of school-age children to take a stand against standardized tests and boycott their child's participation in the Ohio Achievement Assessments.

"I think spending that much time on assessments for children that small is random,” said Melanie Richards who has a third grader and an eleventh grader in Columbus City Schools

This afternoon 10TV caught up Melanie Richards and Nicole Kraft as they dropped off their OAA opt out letters at Columbus City Schools's Kingswood Data Center.

Richards says her son did well on his third grade reading assessment in the fall and that should be enough.

"I don't see a reason to place my child, who is nine-years-old, through two and a half hours of testing when he has already passed the test already,” said Richards

The Ohio Department of Education says state tests are part of the educational process and in a statement to 10TV said:

State tests are one way to check the progress of students as they work to meet the expectations set by Ohio's New Learning Standards.  Ohio law requires that a school district administers the state required assessments to all students in tested grades.

When a parent wants to refuse their child’s participation on state assessments, there are consequences for their child and school. Districts should work with families so that all students participate in state assessments. If a parent refuses to have their child participate in an assessment, schools should give the parents a written explanation of in writing the consequences of that decision for their child and to ask parents to document their refusal in writing.

In addition, The Ohio Department of Education says there are consequences if a student opts-out of an exam. 

The Department says if a student opts out of the third grade exam they will not be promoted to the next grade.  Likewise, if they opt out of the OGT they will not graduate.

And ODE says opting out of assessments will hurt the child's school by giving it lower scores, thus a lower rating. 

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