Compromise Reached In Oklahoma Graduation Test Controversy
SAND SPRINGS, Oklahoma - A compromise was struck in what had become a contentious battle over education reform in Oklahoma.
High school students will get another chance to get a diploma, even if they fail tests over what they should have learned.
The State Department of Education says the new decision only formalizes an appeals process that was already in place.
In Frank Cooper's class at Charles Page High School, students have moved past their end of instruction tests to practice for the tests they'll need to get into college.
Everyone in the class passed their EOI's - though not without some concern.
"I was nervous just because in the back of your head, because you may not think it's that hard, but in the back or your head you have this, ‘I have to pass this,'" Sand Springs Senior Connor Bearden said.
The high school has three students still in jeopardy of not passing their "end of instruction" tests - but now they have a new option for a diploma - through a direct appeal to the state school board
"Preferred it been up to the local board of education because we're closest to the children, but in the process of compromise, you have to do some compromising," Sand Springs Superintendent Lloyd Snow said.
Superintendent Snow tried to have the EOI's eliminated - but is happy with the compromise of students having another option to get a diploma.
If high school students cannot: Pass 4 of 7 EOI exams, or pass alternative tests, or complete an end of course project, they can now appeal to the State Board of Education for their diploma.
Snow still believes the EOI tests are a poor way to gauge past results, future success or whether someone deserves a diploma.
"They've done everything we've asked them to, but they just can't get there," Snow said. "Those kids deserve a diploma."
The appeals process is already open for seniors who won't be able to meet the requirements by the end of the year.