Statement: Colorado’s Largest Union Pleased by Standardized Testing Waiver

March 26, 2021

CEA President Baca-Oehlert:
Colorado’s Largest Union Pleased by Standardized Testing Waiver
U.S. Department of Education grants Colorado’s waiver with one addition

DENVER, CO – Today, the U.S. Department of Education granted Colorado’s assessment waiver request to scale down CMAS testing this year to language arts tests for students in grades three, five and seven and math in grades four, six and eight – and added the requirement of the science test for 8th grade. Waivers for science testing for grades five and eleven were granted.

The following statement can be attributed to Amie Baca-Oehlert, high school counselor and president of the Colorado Education Association:

“Educators across Colorado are pleased that the U.S. Department of Education recognized that full-scale standardized testing this year would be not only completely unnecessary, but also harmful to students struggling to survive the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Students and educators have been bouncing between in-person, virtual and hybrid learning depending on the COVID-19 conditions in their community for a year now. The last thing students need is to have the brakes slammed on learning to accommodate several weeks of standardized testing.

“We are grateful to Rep. Emily Sirota, Rep. Barbara McLachlan, Sen. Rachel Zenzinger, and Sen. Don Coram for sponsoring the legislation to apply for this partial pause that will provide some much-needed relief for students and educators this spring. Our voices matter, and we thank CEA members, parents and community allies who signed petitions, made phone calls and took action in support of the assessment waiver.

“We care deeply about making sure all our students are learning during the pandemic. The wisest thing to do is to focus every single second on instruction so our students are able to concentrate on learning and maintaining their mental health until the pandemic subsides.”

About the Colorado Education Association
The Colorado Education Association is the voice of 39,000 educators, working together in a strong union to ensure all students get the exceptional public schools they deserve, in every neighborhood across the state. As Colorado’s largest labor union, CEA works collectively with all education stakeholders to ensure Colorado’s standing as an excellent state in which to learn, live, work, and raise a family.

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