Lawmakers Agree Students Should Spend Fewer Hours on Standardized Tests

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As lawmakers in Columbus battle to finalize the state budget, the debate over standardized testing continues. StateImpact Ohio's Amy Hansen reports one area where legislators are finding some common ground is agreeing that students spend too much time on the assessments.

Ohio's students currently log roughly 20 hours per year taking the exams, and legislators want to slash that number.

House lawmakers would like to cap testing at three hours per year.

While state senators aren't as specific, their recently released budget amendments include a call for shorter assessments.

That's music to the ears of Becky Higgins, president of the Ohio Education Association.

"A number of people told me that maybe there's like 30 days this past school year spent on either getting ready for the testing or actually taking the test," she said. "And that is just way too much time."

But the legislature's still divided on a few education areas, including the continued support of PARCC, the national testing consortium which provided the state's first round of Common Core-aligned tests this past spring.

Lawmakers have less than two weeks to come to an overall agreement and then approve the new budget.

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