Calif. seeks to shelve current standardized tests

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Education officials are proposing to do away with the standardized reading and math tests California public school students have taken since the late 1990s.

California Deputy Superintendent Deb Sigman told the California Board of Education on Wednesday that instead of giving the multiple-choice, pencil-and-paper STAR tests this spring, the state would instead introduce new tests that are administered on computers and have been developed with other states.

The state previously had planned only to sample the new tests, called the Measurement of Academic Performance and Progress, with about 20 percent of California's public school students.

Sigman says the acceleration is aimed at more quickly acquainting teachers and students with the new tests, which officials say emphasize analytical skills over rote memorization.

The proposal still needs approval from the California Legislature and the U.S. Department of Education.

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