Delaying start for state tests is sensible

Ohio legislators and the state Department of Education are being asked to give public schools and their students a break on achievement tests scheduled for this spring.

Because of the harsh winter, many Buckeye State students have missed several days of school – in excess of 10 in some areas. As any teacher will tell you, that is an eternity when it comes to ensuring children learn material needed to pass achievement tests.

Some school administrators have suggested the testing schedule should be delayed to allow teachers and students to catch up.

The tests are scheduled to be administered between April 21 and May 9, so there is time to allow for a delay.

More than merely evaluating how well schools are doing is involved. This is the first year third graders will be tested on reading, to ensure they have reached adequate proficiency. Those who have not may not be allowed to move on to the fourth grade. This is testing at very high stakes.

Clearly, state officials should allow local school administrators the option of testing students later than had been scheduled. And, if the weather continues to force school cancellations, even more adjustments may be prudent.