Teaching & Learning

Standardized Testing and Parents’ Right to Opt Out

State law allows parents to opt out of state-mandated testing for their child. (The federal Every Student Succeeds Act affirms this right.)

State law allows parents to opt out of state-mandated testing for their child. (The federal Every Student Succeeds Act affirms this right.) However, California also has specific regulations about what an educator can say to parents about opting out: Educators can inform parents of their right to opt out of high-stakes testing for their child, but cannot solicit or encourage parents to do so.

The state’s system of mandated and optional assessments is known as CAASPP (California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress) and includes Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments, California Alternate Assessments, and the California Science Test. CTA believes tests should be used to inform instruction and improve student learning. A true assessment of student achievement and improvement is always done through multiple measures and can never focus on just one test score. To learn more about CTA’s position on testing and opting out, and to access resources to help educators have conversations with parents (including materials in multiple languages), go to cta.org/optout.

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