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Md. School District Wants To Do Away With Old Assessment Test For Students

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Testing for testing sake. That’s what some state school leaders are saying about the Maryland assessment test for students.

This comes as schools across the country are switching over to federal guidelines.

Gigi Barnett has the latest.

Those new federal standards are called the Common Core. At least one school district in Maryland says it’s time to do away with the old test.

There wasn’t much debate Tuesday night among Montgomery County school leaders on the future of the state’s school assessment test. They all agreed–it’s obsolete.

“At this point, they have no value, there’s nothing that we would be using them for,” said Chris Barclay, school board member.

“To just do testing for testing sake when they’re not in alignment and not of any useful data is just foolish,” said Patricia O’Neill, school board member.

Montgomery County is one Maryland district that wants to get rid of the old assessment test now that teachers across the country are focused on the Common Core. It’s a federal curriculum that Maryland and 45 other states have adopted.

It’s a new way of learning and teaching.

“With the new standards, we are teaching students how to apply their learning to real world situations,” said John White, Dept. of Education. “In the past, we may have had memorization or we may have had fill in the blank bubble tests instead of assessments that actually analyze critical thinking skills.”

That’s why some state lawmakers and the Montgomery County school board want to do away with the MSA, even though this is the last year students have to take it.

White says there’s one simple reason to keep it–it’s still good for something.

“In no transition can you just pull the plug and then restart without missing something,” he said. “If teaching fractions used to be at fourth grade and now it’s pushed down to third grade, we don’t want the students who went to fourth grade to miss it.”

All Maryland students will take the MSA for the last time ever in March.

While the District of Columbia joined the 46 states that have adopted the Common Core, Virginia has not.

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