Should Minnesota drop MCA tests' graduation requirement? - New York News

  • Should Minnesota drop its math test requirement for graduation?

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Should Minnesota drop MCA tests' graduation requirement?

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A Minnesota math test that will soon decide whether or not students can take home their diploma is facing backlash from educators who want the requirement to be dropped.

On Tuesday, an important working group at the Department of Education said the tests have failed and should be eliminated.

Students are already required to pass reading and writing exams before they can get their high school diplomas, but the class of 2015 will also be required to pass a rigorous math exam as well.

However, the test is so rigorous, education officials are worried a lot of kids won't pass and will be unable to graduate. In fact, Education Commissioner Brenda Casselius told FOX 9 News that 44 percent of high school students across the state are not passing the math portion of the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment.

A working group of about 30 teachers, administrators, college and business leaders almost unanimously recommended eliminating the exam on Tuesday, and Casselius said that's because the tests have done a poor job of predicting how students will perform in college.

"We think that we can give better assessments," she said. "We think, with these better assessments, it will give us earlier intervention information so the teachers can work with these students developmentally so they don't have to take remedial course work when they get to college."

Casselius also said the math exam does not align with the ACT test or colleges.

The recommendation still must go before the Legislature and win Gov. Mark Dayton's approval before it can go into effect.

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