State Senator Jay Hottinger (left) visited recently Buckeye Career Center and met with a group of students at the Joe Carlisle Cafe and Marketplace. Pictured from left to right are Nathan Short (Dover), Charles Griffin (Conotton Valley), Gabee Fisher, Savannah Engstrom (Claymont), and Jessica Gipson (Newcomerstown). (Submitted photo)

New Philadelphia, Ohio - A group of Buckeye Career Center students recently got the chance to voice their thoughts on state testing to an Ohio lawmaker. 

State Senator Jay Hottinger visited BCC last Friday. The senator dined in the Joe Carlisle Café and was joined by administrators, guidance counselors and five students. 

The students expressed their opinions on the stringent requirements to graduate, including the need to pass end-of-course exams and achieve high subscores in the various academic subjects. 

In addition, Early Childhood Education senior Gabee Fisher (Indian Valley) spoke about the amount of tests students are subjected to every school year. 

“I think we’ve gotten into a routine that it’s just a normal thing. We try but maybe not our hardest because we’ve taken so many tests
over the years. To have that much pressure put on you is scary and hard,” Fisher said.

Principal Matt Fockler estimates that career technical students take up to 26 state-mandated exams during their four years in high school, not including subject tests issued by teachers in the classroom.

Senator Hottinger agreed that students are tested too frequently. 

“I’m for having high standards but we have to recognize that there are some people that can’t get over that hurdle. Having
students not be able to graduate is not something that is good for them or the community-at-large. The consequences in the community are enormous,” he said.

Hottinger hopes the legislature will be able to make some changes in the coming months that would benefit the class of 2019. 

“How do we get to the point of reducing it (testing) and figuring out when and where those tests should be administered,” asked Hottinger.

Currently, students must complete a minimum of 20 credits in academic classes, in addition to completing one of three state pathways that include earning 18 points on end-of-course state tests and specific point values in each subject; earning 12 points toward industry credentials, or earning remediation-free scores in math and English on the ACT or SAT.


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