On Friday, January 25, WSPTA President Michelle Nims gave testimony on three separate bills in front of the Senate Early Learning & K-12 Education Committee (click here for the full text). For SB 5014, she spoke in support of the bill which would delink state assessments from high school graduation requirements and shared stories. President Nims also shared that we support a 24-credit high school diploma but Washington state should recognize the barriers this presents to achieving a high school diploma. Students should be given maximum flexibility to chart a path according to the goals in their High School and Beyond Plan. WSPTA believes this bill undervalues a job after high school and is unclear regarding how the new pathway requirements would work with students on IEPs.
Later, within the same committee hearing, President Nims gave testimony on SB 5146. It is WSPTA’s adopted position that the state assessment system should be balanced, with high standards and multiple ways for students to demonstrate learning, and that there should be no single assessment used for making decisions about high school graduation. WSPTA does not believe that this bill goes far enough to help every student reach his or her potential.