Rightwing corporate reformers like to go on and on about parental choice. Choice. Choice. Choice. The one choice they will not tolerate is parents who want their children to refuse the state tests. No choice! Governor Nathan Deal of Georgia vetoed a bill that would make it easier to parents to opt their children out of state standardized tests. He also blocked the possibility of students taking the tests using paper and pencil, instead of a computer. Deal was immediately hailed by Jeb Bush, who pushes computerization and digitization whenever possible. Jeb is a big support of school choice if it means vouchers and charters. He opposes parents’ right to opt out of testing. He is also a major supporter of computer-based instruction and computer-based assessment. His “Foundation for Educational Excellence” is largely funded by the software corporations that profit from standardized testing and data mining online. It has long been a goal of the corporate reform industry to use tests to “prove” that public schools are failing, that there is an “achievement gap,” and that parents should pull their children out of public schools and send them to charter schools or demand vouchers. Once that happens, the test scores don’t count anymore, because neither charters nor vouchers raise test scores or close achievement gaps. It is all a massive hoax to promote privatization.

This article appeared in Politico Pro. I am not a s

By Aubree Eliza Weaver
05/09/2017 01:52 PM EDT

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal today vetoed a bill that would have made it easier for students to opt out of taking standardized tests.

House Bill 425 included provisions discouraging disciplinary action against those students who do not participate in federal, state or locally mandated standardized assessments. Additionally, it would have allowed students to complete the exams using paper and pencil, instead of a computer.

“First, as I stated in my veto of SB 133 last year, local school districts currently have the flexibility to determine opt-out procedures for students who cannot, or choose not to, take these statewide assessments and I see no need to impose an addition layer of state-level procedures for these students,” Deal said in a statement.

He also said that reverting to paper-and-pencil exams would make it harder for the state to return test data to districts quickly and goes against the state’s priority of reducing opportunities for students to cheat.

Deal’s decision was lauded by the Foundation for Excellence in Education, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

“The proposal would have harmed students and teachers by denying access to measurements that track progress on standardized assessments,” the advocacy group, founded by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, said in a statement. “Maintaining a transparent and accountable measurement systems is critical to ensuring students are on track to succeed in college and beyond — and indicates how successful schools are in preparing students for the future.”

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This article appeared in Politico Pro. I am not a subscriber because it costs $3,500 a year, the last time I checked. Too rich for my taste.