Common Core Testing Clears Another Hurdle

Supporters of Common Core turned back an attempt Monday to give legislators oversight on the national assessment test linked to the new standards.

A bill initially drafted by a Common Core opponent to disallow funding for the test was amended to have the Joint Budget Committee approve the eventual contract.

The House Appropriations Committee adopted the change but then rejected HB 380 by Rep. Brett Geymann, R-Lake Charles, on a 10-12 vote.

The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has selected the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers test for grades one through eight, but it has not chosen a test yet for high schoolers.

“I don’t like PARCC, but that isn’t what this bill is about,” said Geymann. “All we’re asking for is fiscal oversight.”

Common Core supporters still warned the bill would throw a wrench into the process underway to begin testing in 2015.

Superintendent of Education John White argued that the bill would affect other tests, as well as local school boards and teachers who have already gone home for the year.

He repeated his claim that approval of the bill would upset the ongoing process and throw teachers in a “state of chaos.”

Geymann objected to White’s “gloom and doom” warnings in defense of letting a single-source contract.

Gov. Bobby Jindal has left open the possibility that he might unilaterally delay the PARCC tests for one year if the Legislature does not act to do so.

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