Ga. School Board to Vote on New Testing Standards

ATLANTA (AP) - The Georgia Board of Education will vote in April on a plan to phase out the Georgia High School Graduation Test in favor of end-of-course exams that better measure students' learning.

The state has been trying for a decade to toss out the graduation test, which students must pass to get a diploma.

Georgia educators have called the test - taken at the end of students' junior years - simply a barrier to graduating rather than an accurate depiction of whether a student is ready for graduation.

The change would take effect for high school freshmen this fall.

In the last few years, states such as North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Alabama have gotten rid of graduation tests and instead implemented end-of-course exams.

By the end of 2015, the Center on Education Policy predicts, up to 15 states will be using end-of-course tests as exit exams, up from five in 2008.

Georgia's plan must gain approval from the U.S. Department of Education before the change is final.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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