Introduced February 19, 2015, House Bill 74 is designed to reduce testing and change how PARCC tests are given. It also modifies the system for evaluating the student academic growth factor for teacher evaluations.

Testing Limits

The bill places a three hour limit per assessment during each elementary achievement assessment. Administration of each high school end-of-course examination is limited to three hours per year. These limits do not apply to assessments for students with disabilities, the third-grade English language arts assessment, nationally standardized assessments that measure college/career readiness, diagnostic assessments for students who failed the third-grade English language arts assessment, or substitute exams in science, American history, or American government. Also, kindergarten readiness diagnostic assessment is limited to one hour. The kindergarten assessment may be given in portions or all at once.

Third-Grade English Language Arts Assessment

The bill reduces the administration of the third-grade English language arts assessment to once annually (previously was administered twice). It also prohibits districts from being required to administer the assessment in the fall.

Modification/Elimination of Tests

The bill eliminates the requirement for districts to administer all writing diagnostic assessments in grades K-3 as well as the requirement that the mathematics diagnostic assessments be administered in kindergarten and first grade. It also eliminates English language arts II and geometry end-of-course examinations.

Equivalent Examination

Beginning in 2016-2017, the bill requires districts to notify the Department of Education of any assessment in a subject area that the district chooses to use as an equivalent examination. Also, it authorizes a district to use end-of-course examinations, substitute examinations, or equivalent examinations as final examinations for the related class.

Teacher Evaluation

The Bill modifies how a district must evaluate the student academic growth component of a teacher for purposes of teacher evaluations.

What You Need to Know

If passed, H.B. 74 will reduce the testing requirements in your district. Keep a pulse on this bill, and consider changes to your testing schedules