Amidst the worries and concerns about the spread of the new Coronavirus, State School Superintendent Richard Woods has decided to suspend all state testing until further notice. This decision affects all state-wide testing, including EOC’s and Milestones. The suspension also covers teacher and leader evaluations and state level attendance consequences.
Woods claims that right now, “Schools’ focus needs to be on the safety of the students and staff.” He goes on to say, “It’s common sense: testing and accountability requirements should not place an additional burden on students, parents, and educators during this time, and they will not in Georgia.” Normally, EOC grades count as 20% of a student’s final grade in the course, however, Superintendent Woods will be suggesting a waiver to that rule at the school board meeting that will take place on March 27.
The precautions being taken to avoid the mass spread of Coronavirus here in the United States have caused schools all across the nation to close, and many of them have decided to continue school work online, including all of the Forsyth County Schools. Teachers are instructed to use Google Meet and Google Classroom to hold class and keep business going as normal as possible, but the students are still not able to receive face-to-face instruction with their teachers. Just as Mr. Woods claims, the suspension of statewide testing allows for the burden of self-preparing for such a large test to be lifted.
Meanwhile, the numbers of those infected by Coronvirus continue to skyrocket in the United States. 1,100 new cases have been reported since Fri. March 13, most of which are in California, Washington, and New York. Currently, there are 99 confirmed cases in Georgia and one death. ‘Social distancing’ has been advised by many professionals to help slow the spread of this global pandemic.
Right now, it seems as if the public’s health is at heart for those calling the shots, and they are keeping everyone’s best interest in mind, especially Superintendent Woods. As of right now, only time will tell if the suspension on statewide testing will be lifted.