Education A State Capitals Roundup

Arizona English-Learners Must Take Exit Exam

By Mary Ann Zehr — April 18, 2006 1 min read

English-language learners in this year’s graduating class in Arizona must pass the state high school exit exam to get their diplomas, according to a recent federal court ruling.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit has issued a stay on several orders by U.S. District Judge Raner C. Collins in Flores v. Arizona, including one in December that said English-learners couldn’t be required to pass the exit exam until the state showed it had improved programs for such students.

Tom Horne, Arizona’s superintendent of public instruction, had requested a stay on the orders.

The appeals court ruled recently that Judge Collins’ order on testing cannot go into effect at least until July 24, the date set for hearings on Mr. Horne’s appeal regarding the matter, according to Doug Nick, the interim press secretary for the Arizona Department of Education.