A bill that would scrap the MCAS test as a graduation requirement in Massachusetts is the subject of a virtual public hearing at the Statehouse on Monday.
The bill would replace the standardized test with what supporters describe as "a broader and democratically determined framework to measure school quality, along with more authentic forms of demonstrating student achievement.''
The bill would create a grant program to let teachers, students, parents and local school districts set goals for their public schools, decide how best to evaluate if those goals are being met, and identify what resources are needed to realize those goals.
It would also require the state to offer multiple pathways for students to demonstrate that they "have met the mastery standard for the competency determination, including options that do not require a student to take a standardized test.''
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The Massachusetts Teachers Association supports the bill. MTA President Merrie Najimy said in a press release that the influence of the MCAS has alienated students who have diverse backgrounds and learning styles. "Public schools in predominantly Black and brown communities have been taken over by state bureaucrats who have been using standardized testing as a tool not to improve opportunities for students but instead as one to pry public education from the hands of the families and educators who know best what their students need,'' Najimy said.
The virtual hearing is scheduled for Monday at 11 a.m.