New Mexico Governor Ends Current Student Testing Model

SANTA FE – New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Thursday set in motion the replacement of the current statewide standardized testing system with a pair of executive orders that also calls for removing those exam results from teacher evaluations.

The orders by the Democratic governor on her third day in office correspond with campaign pledges to do away student assessments developed by the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC — a system Lujan Grisham described as high-pressure and counterproductive.

The orders hold major implications for teacher evaluations that were more closely linked to student test scores under preceding Republican Gov. Susana Martinez in the name of accountability.

Appearing alongside teachers and education specialists including the state’s new lieutenant governor, Lujan Grisham said her administration will follow a “bottom-up” strategy of consulting with teachers, parents and experts in education to find new methods of assessing teachers and students.

She said it is still too soon to say whether standardized questionnaires will continue to play a role in student assessments.

“The message today should be to students and families that they should expect New Mexico schools to transition immediately out of high-stakes testing,” she said.

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