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Ohio Is Phasing Out Pencil-and-Paper Tests Over the Objection Of Some Lawmakers

Elementary students
Karen Kasler

Ohio lawmakers are debating whether schools should completely phase out state tests taken with paper and pencil in favor of online testing only.  The end of the school year marks a new age for state testing.

Starting next year, taking the standardized tests on computers will be the only option unless the district makes a special request because of a certain need.

But Republican Rep. Andrew Brenner of Delaware isn’t convinced this will result in better student performance. He’s concerned about variables such as students who live in a house without a computer.

“How many of them have computer skills? How many of them specifically know how to keyboard? And at what ages? I’m pretty positive the Department of Education doesn’t have any of those statistics,” Brenner says.

A provision in the current budget would keep paper and pencil tests and have the state study the issue further.

Senate leaders have suggested they’ll erase that.

Andy Chow is a general assignment state government reporter who focuses on environmental, energy, agriculture, and education-related issues. He started his journalism career as an associate producer with ABC 6/FOX 28 in Columbus before becoming a producer with WBNS 10TV.