The California High School Exit Exam: Abusive and antiquated
By Jo Anne Behm, sent to the Sacramento Bee
The high school exit exam is a public policy disaster of epic proportions, costing taxpayers over $500 million annually, denying 35k-60k seniors their diplomas every June since 2006. Over 300,000 seniors who earned 230-270 graduation credits, passed 13 year-long courses required to graduate, persevered 13 years, 14,000 hours in k-12 classrooms, some accepted to two or more colleges---are forced to sacrifice college and scholarships, are no longer eligible for Cal Grants or other financial aid, cannot deliver packages for UPS, collect boarding passes for any airline, sell shoes at Sears, or qualify as an apprentice for over 70% of California trades because they have no high school diploma.
It is totally abusive, inhumane, and militaristic to claim these students are not qualified to graduate because of a flawed test based on mind-numbing memorization and a cold-turkey,surprise topic essay that prohibits technology, references, editing. Return to teaching vs. antiquated testing.
Jo Ann Rupert Behm, M.S., RN
State & Federal Public Policy Consultant
Environmental Health, Disabilities, Education