Arizona faces a loss of $340 million in federal funding because the state hasn’t followed the Every Student Succeeds Act’s rules for testing its students, say U.S. Department of Education officials.
This spring, Arizona allowed its districts a choice of offering the ACT, the SAT, or the AzMerit exam at the high school level. ESSA allows states to offer districts the option of using a nationally recognized college-entrance exam in place of a state test—if they first meet other requirements.
For instance, states must make sure that the national exam, such as the ACT or SAT, measures progress toward the state’s standards at least as well as the original state test. They also must make sure that the results of the national exam can be compared with the state test.
Arizona “hasn’t provided evidence that it has completed any of this work,” Frank Brogan, the assistant secretary for elementary and secondary education, said in a letter.
Kathy Hoffman, the newly elected schools superintendent, said she agrees with the Education Department and is taking steps to rectify the situation.
A version of this article appeared in the April 17, 2019 edition of Education Week as Arizona Could Lose $340 Million For Skirting ESSA Testing Rules