SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Cristina Pacione-Zayas (D-Chicago) led the Illinois Senate in calling on the U.S. Department of Education to waive spring student assessments, as it did in 2020.

“So many students have been learning remotely or in a hybrid system over the past year. Expecting them to run to school for federally required tests just isn’t realistic,” Pacione-Zayas said. “More importantly, without every student in school to take the tests, we won’t be able to get reliable data that allows us to assess and compare progress between schools and districts.”

The Illinois State Board of Education has already announced that it has delayed its normal testing window out of respect for the more than one million students still learning in fully remote environments.

Data from federally required testing is normally used to target supports and improvements for struggling schools and school districts. In the state’s largest school district, Chicago Public Schools, students would potentially be returning to the classroom only to immediately jump into standardized testing.

“We all know this is not a typical year,” Pacione-Zayas said. “Let’s have some compassion for our students and teachers and allow them to use their limited time in the classroom to learn and recover from the trauma of the pandemic, rather than to take stressful tests.”

Senate Resolution 166 was adopted by the Illinois Senate today.

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