House votes to allow localities to establish testing standards

The House adopted an amendment Thursday to the House GOP’s No Child Left Behind replacement that would allow local education agencies to establish their own academic testing system.

The amendment, sponsored by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), allowing local education agencies to create their own tests instead of the state-designed system passed on a voice vote.

{mosads}Goodlatte argued it would give localities more flexibility.

“Having this choice can only benefit our nation’s schools as they seek to provide quality education in a transparent manner,” Goodlatte said.

But Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Va.), the top Democrat on the House Education and the Workforce Committee, warned it would lead to too many different testing systems.

“Allowing each locality to come up with its own home-baked assessments will lead to confusion,” Scott said.

However, local agencies would have to secure approval from the state to administer their own academic assessments. Goodlatte maintained that the occurrence of local educational agencies establishing their own testing wouldn’t happen everywhere.

“I think this is going to occur in limited circumstances because the state still has the ultimate power,” Goodlatte said.

The House is working through 44 amendments to the bill Thursday and Friday. Final passage of the measure, which cedes authority over academic testing standards from the federal government to the states, is expected Friday.

Tags Bob Goodlatte Bobby Scott No Child Left Behind Act
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