BESE Proposes Using LEAP Tests Another Year
Board of Elementary and Secondary Education leaders are offering a compromise in their dispute with Governor Bobby Jindal over the Common Core curriculum.
BESE President Chas Roemer says the board's proposing to use LEAP tests again this school year, but the exams will also contain questions from the Common Core-aligned PARCC exam.
Neither of them contemplated new LEAP tests for 2015.
"We feel a need to move now and outline a clear path for our teachers, students and school systems," Roemer said. "And not wait another week and perhaps not reach a solution in another week."
Roemer says the PARCC questions will those developed in part by the state. He says this allows the state to compare how its students are doing against others nationwide.
But the Jindal administration threw cold water on an idea for standardized tests in public schools. BESE leaders floated a plan to have a test with questions from the LEAP exam and the test tied to Common Core. But Commissioner of Administration Kristy Nichols says it's not doable, because existing contracts with LEAP are not valid for next school year.
"Both of those contracts were designed to get them through 2014, test development for different type of questions," Nichols said."Neither of them contemplated new LEAP tests for 2015."
Nichols says there's also no state contract that would allow Louisiana to use Common Core tests for the 2014-15 school year, and she has concerns over how questions from that test would be acquired.
It's unclear what will happen as there's still no standardized test in place for next school year, which begins in about a month.