Weatherford Democrat

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April 20, 2014

Is opting out an option?

Parents testing school districts, TEA by keeping children home on STAAR days

(Continued)

“There are a lot of teachers that care about the welfare of the students, and we’re losing good staff because they’re tired of all the testing,” Osterkamp said. “I’m not against benchmark testing but the STAAR is not benchmark testing.”

Osterkamp said she was pleasantly surprised at the reception from administrators after sending the letter, and said she was anxious at first because of hearing stories of bullying and intimidation from administrators in other districts.

“I also had to remind myself that I didn’t need to come in with both barrels blazing,” she said. “I didn’t want [the district] to get defensive. It’s not the fault of the local teachers and administrators. They’re basically just doing what the state tells them.”

“This issue needs to be addressed with the Texas Legislature, the House, the Senate leaders... I can’t think that [Osterkamp’s] view is an isolated one and I think their voice needs to be heard — I just hope they focus it in the right direction,” Hanks said. “I understand the talk of there being an overreliance on testing but we’re fortunate that they cut back the number of EOC’s during the last session.”

Visit Facebook to find out more about the Weatherford Parents Opt-Out or Texas Parents Opt Out of State Tests pages.

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