Resources and information for standardized testing
Do students and parents/guardians have the right to opt-out their child from state testing?
Yes, but OSPI refers to this as a refusal, not an opt-out. While not addressed in state legislation, adopted agency policy allows students or parents to refuse to participate in state assessments. This policy requires either the student or parent to put this request into writing and for it to be kept on file at the school or district office. In addition, the policy recommends the parent include the reason for not wanting the child tested but it is not required. Requests should specifically list any tests you wish to opt-out of including interim tests, practice or make-up tests.
What requirements are there related to taking the state assessment(s)?
District requirements: At all grade levels, districts may adopt additional policies that could impact families and students deciding to opt out of state or district required tests. For example, districts may use results to inform or determine placement in programs such as AP, IB or gifted classes. Students and parents considering opting out are encouraged to contact their school district to determine if there are any local impacts.
High school graduation: All students are required to at least once attempt the state test in ELA, Math and Science to graduate. If they meet the exit exam score, they are on track to graduate. If they don’t meet the exit exam score, they can pursue alternatives to the test to qualify for graduation.
The SBA at the 11th grade is a graduation requirement, starting with the class of 2019. Students graduating before 2019 should visit OSPI’s website to determine which tests are required for graduation.
Students who do not attempt the required state assessments are not eligible to graduate from high school and are not eligible to access alternate routes for graduation.
A very small population of students receiving special education services may be administered the WA-Access to Instruction & Measurement (WA-AIM) instead of the SBA. Testing eligibility is determined by a student’s IEP team.
More resources and information
- FairTest: National Center for Fair and Open Testing
- United Opt Out
- Change the Stakes
- OSPI: State testing and graduation requirements
- OSPI: Alternate graduation routes
Please contact Sally McNair for more information about opting-out.