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MEA on board to waive 2021 M-STEP standardized test

Published: Mar. 31, 2021 at 11:21 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) -

Concerns rising over students returning to the classroom after reports of a spike in cases.

The confusion has prompted a request to suspend federal standardized testing requirements.

The State’s Top Teacher’s union says educators already have a way to measure student progress effectively.

David Crim with the Michigan Education Association (MEA) say they prefer to give those benchmark tests this year instead of the federally mandated M-STEP test for elementary and middle school students.

“The experts are the classroom teachers, they develop these benchmark tests to get the data they need so they understand where their students are academically,” Crim said.

State Superintendent Michael Rice is on the same page asking the federal government earlier this year to skip the federally mandated M-STEP test because of the disruption of instruction caused by the pandemic.

The U.S. Department of Education hasn’t made a decision on that yet, but Monday it waived federal requirements for participation rates and progress goals.

Crim says he hopes the Department follows the same logic.

“These teachers understand that they’re going to be dealing with a lot of kids coming from a lot of places, socially, emotionally and mentally. So it’s going to be enough of a challenge just to just to teach, let alone administer these worthless tests,” added Crim.

Even back in January Superintendent Dr. Ryan Cunningham of Ovid-Elsie Area Schools say teachers had some anxiety about the statewide assessments.

“I just think there’s that inherent fear with staff right now that hey, I haven’t had complete control of this for well over a year, and you want to make our kids test and you’re going to assign that score to me as a teacher, that’s not fair,” he said.

As of now those standardized tests are still scheduled for later this spring.

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