BESE continues with Common Core testing

BESE continues with Common Core testing - Part 1
(Source: James deGraauw/WAFB)
(Source: James deGraauw/WAFB)

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Opting out of the Common Core testing and the potential fall out dominated the agenda of the Louisiana's top education board in Baton Rouge Thursday.

The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education is resisting a move to waive penalties for schools with students refusing to take the Common Core standardized tests. Last month, Gov. Bobby Jindal urged parents to opt out if they want to.

The board wants to take a wait and see how many kids want to 'opt out' and decide later about taking any action, especially if the numbers are so widespread. They will get a report on those students who tested after the exams are taken the third week of March.

Thursday's meeting ran over four hours behind and was attended by anti-Common Core parents there making some noise and carrying signs.

"As a board, if you don't respect that authority and you don't. You've shown that," said Sarah Woods, one of the parents against the Common Core standards. "You do not respect the authority of parents, and you do not using it as a guiding light. Then all that stems from this board will go against the stated goals and purpose of our system of education as protected by the United States and Louisiana constitution until you burn it down."

BESE leaders are more concerned about those students who opt-out of the standardized test and how that decision could impact school performance scores.

"Our policy in this state is that if a student were to skip the test, their school would receive a zero and that remains the policy in our state. However, what we told the superintendent is that when we get the results back this year, we want an analysis done," said BESE chairman Chas Roemer.

Roemer said this is the last year for these tests under the current contract and BESE will look at a number of things moving forward in the testing of students.

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