State effort to relieve high school juniors of SBAC testing moves forward

State Senator Gayle S. Slossberg (D-Milford) praised her co-chair of the Education Committee, Representative Andrew Fleischmann (D-West Hartford), and her colleagues in the House for approving legislation on Tuesday that she championed in the Senate to unburden high school juniors from standardized testing.
The proposal would end the requirement that 11th-grade students participate in the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) testing. Instead, students would be able to take a nationally recognized college readiness exam.
“Relieving the burden of over-testing on our students was a top priority for me this session as the new Senate Chair of the Education Committee,” Slossberg said. “This bill expands opportunities for students, opening up the possibility of a college education for those who never even dreamed of such a thing. This is a win for students, parents and teachers alike. I want to thank Rep. Fleischmann for his support and for championing the bill in the House.”
SBAC is a Common Core Standards-aligned set of tests that Connecticut administers to students from third grade through eighth grade, and once in high school. Although they are designed as untimed tests, the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium estimates that 11th-graders will spend a total of eight and one half hours taking English language arts and mathematics assessments.
A survey of more than 1,100 K-12 teachers in Connecticut taken between May 8-May 15 found that more than 90 percent of participating teachers felt “the time it took to complete the SBAC test caused student frustration and apathy,” and just under 90 percent agreed that SBAC test preparation “takes away significant time and resources from teaching and learning in my classroom,” according to a press release from Slossberg.
The bill now heads to the governor and awaits his signature.