Current StatusView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
Bill Number: 235 Ratification Number: 218 Act Number 154 Introducing Body: Senate Subject: Basic Skills Assessment Program, minimum standards
(A154, R218, S235)
AN ACT TO AMEND ACT 631 OF 1978, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE BASIC SKILLS ASSESSMENT PROGRAM, SO AS TO REQUIRE MINIMUM STANDARDS OF ACHIEVEMENT TO BE ESTABLISHED FOR GRADES 1, 2, 3, 6, 8, AND 11 RATHER THAN GRADES 1 THROUGH 12, MODIFY PROVISIONS RELATING TO TESTING FOR ADULT FUNCTIONAL COMPETENCY, FURTHER PROVIDE FOR GRADE 11 TESTING, MAKE ADDITIONAL ALREADY COMPILED DATA AVAILABLE TO SCHOOL DISTRICTS CONCERNING INSTRUCTIONAL PROGRAMS AND REVISE THE TESTING TIMETABLE TO CORRESPOND IT TO OTHER CHANGES MADE IN THIS ACT.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
Section 1. Items (a), (e), (f) and (n) of Section 1 of Act 631 of 1978 are amended to read:
"(a) Establish statewide educational objectives in the basic skills for kindergarten through grade 12 and establish minimum standards of student achievement for readiness and Grades 1, 2, 3, 6, 8 and 11. The term 'basic skills' shall include mathematics and the communication skills of reading and writing. The minimum standards for readiness and Grades 1, 2, 3, 6, 8 and 11 shall be designed to reflect the level of skill mastery, as determined by the State Board of Education, each student is expected to have attained at the various grades.
(e) Develop or select, and field test, tests that will measure student achievement in the basic skills areas of reading, writing, and mathematics at the end of grade 11 which shall include items requiring the application of school skills to life situations. The field test shall be conducted for the purpose of establishing the reliability and validity of the test.
(f) Beginning in the school year 1981-82 and continuing through the school year 1986-87, administer the test specified in item (e) of this section to all students in grade eleven for the purpose of collecting baseline data. The Department of Education shall use the baseline data for the purpose of program assessment and shall provide assistance to those schools or districts in which the data indicates that program adjustment or modification is most needed due to inordinate numbers of children not passing the test. The State Board of Education shall use the baseline data for the purpose of determining the high school credentials to be awarded students not meeting the minimum achievement scores.
(n) Provide school districts with information concerning basic instructional programs which have been demonstrated to be effective in developing readiness skills or in the teaching of reading, writing and mathematics. The Department of Education shall encourage school districts to adopt programs that are determined to be appropriate to the needs of their students."
Section 2. Item (b) of Section 2 of Act 631 of 1978 is amended to read:
"(b) Adopt appropriate policies to ensure that a continuous assessment is made of an individual student's progress in relation to the statewide minimum standards of student achievement for readiness and grades 1, 2, 3, 6, 8 and 11."
Handicapped students to be included
Section 3. Section 3 of Act 631 of 1978 is amended to read:
"Section 3. All handicapped students as defined by federal and state statutes and regulations will be included in the assessment program unless the student's individual educational plan (IEP) as required by Public Law 94-142 indicates that such assessment would be inappropriate. The inclusion or exclusion of handicapped students shall be on a case by case basis as determined by the child's IEP. In preparing IEP's for handicapped students school districts shall specifically address the appropriateness of a child's participating in the assessment program as required by this act."
Section 4. Section 4 of Act 631 of 1978 is amended to read:
"Section 4. The following timetable applying to the State Department of Education activities shall be completed not later than the year indicated but nothing herein is intended to prohibit an earlier development or field testing of the tests or use of the test results by school districts to meet their responsibilities under this chapter when test results are made available
1978-79 (a) Identification of basic skills objectives
(b) Selection of readiness test for grade one.
1979-80 (a) Test development, field testing and test revisions (grades 1 through 3, 6 and 8)
(b) Administration of readiness test - all students, grade one.
1980-81 (a) Administration of tests, baseline data (first grade readiness and grades 1 through 3, 6 and 8).
(b) Development or selection and field testing of eleventh grade test.
1981-82 (a) Administration of tests (first grade readiness and grades 1 through 3, 6 and 8).
(b) Administration of eleventh grade test, collection of baseline data.
1982-83 (a) Administration of all tests.
1983-84 and subsequent years. Administration of all tests."
Parents to be notified
Section 5. Section 7 of Act 631 of 1978 is amended to read:
"Section 7. The parents or guardian of any student who does not meet the minimum standards set for any test prescribed in this act shall be notified in writing by the school and such notice shall be filed in the scholastic records of the student concerned."
Section 6. This act shall take effect upon approval by the Governor.