Ohio House plan to nix PARCC tests risks loss of $750 million in fed money

Risking the loss of three-quarters of a billion dollars in federal education funding, Republican leaders in the Ohio House have placed language in the two-year budget to ban the use of new student assessments and cut off the money to pay for them.

The PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) tests in English/language arts and math have been under fire for being too hard on students, taking too much time away from classroom instruction and technical glitches with the online exams.

The House version of a two-year state budget prohibits the use of state funds to purchase the PARCC exams.

It also slashes $33.6 million per year from the Department of Education’s budget for assessments and bans the reallocation of other money to pay for assessments.

The proposal does not suggest a replacement for the tests that are required under federal law — and even if it did, the money to pay for them has been eliminated. Ohio spent $45 million on PARCC, which took years to develop and align with new Common Core academic standards.

“We’re trying to send a message that is pretty clear: We need to look at different testing mechanisms for the state,” said House Finance Chairman Ryan Smith, R-Bidwell.

(Read more at the Dispatch)