The Finneys of Marietta, Georgia, have been
fighting their local school district over the state’s standardized
exam battery, the Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests, taken in
third, fifth, and eighth grades and used to determine promotion to
the next grade. Two of their three children were required to take
tests this month, a third grader and a fifth grader, but the
parents refused. At one point they said they thought they had a
meeting scheduled with the principal to talk about their concerns.
Instead, they were met by a cop.
Via the Marietta Daily Journal:
The Finneys worked out a meeting with school
administrators early Wednesday morning to talk things over. But
when they arrived, they were confronted by a police officer instead
of the principal.
According to Tracey Finney, the officer was extremely nice and
professional, but told them being on school property while actively
opposed to the test was “kind of a trespassing thing” and that
their kids weren’t allowed on the property either if they weren’t
going to take the test. The officer’s report confirms the parents
were told they and their students would be trespassing if they
stayed on the property.
The principal says the meeting was cancelled a couple of hours
after it was confirmed via email that morning. The Finneys say they
were told they could send their children to school after the tests
were administered in the morning, but the school then told them
make-up testing would take place in the afternoons. The Finneys say
they like the public school system but that they will send their
children to private school or homeschool them if their children
will be compelled to take the tests.
While the tests have been mandatory in Georgia since 2000, in a
picked up by The Daily Caller the family
linked their concern over the data-collection aspect of
standardized testing to Common Core. “People don’t realize it,” the
statement read in part. “We don’t want to sound like we’re wearing
tin-foil hats, but they want to track our kids from kindergarten
Earlier this year, Colorado parent Sean Black reportedly
got a visit from a cop after he told a state bureaucrat that he
wanted opt his disabled child out of a test. In
with children in public schools are among the loudest opponents
of standardized testing, and Black, also a teacher, was eventually
allowed to opt his child out.
The Finneys, meanwhile, deny that they’re trying to opt out of
the test. Rather, they insist what they’re doing—refusing to have
their children take it—is different. State officials say there’s
nothing in the law to allow for opting out.
This is, of course, the kind of thing that could be curbed by
replacing state and federal standardization and centralization with
a system in which funding
follows the students to the schools of their choice.