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ACT, SAT Opt-Out and School Report Card Overhaul Signed into Law

July 1, 2021
Don Jones News

COLUMBUS – Governor DeWine today signed into law House Bill 82, legislation sponsored by State Representatives Don Jones (R- Freeport) and Jon Cross (R-Kenton) that removes the requirement for every Ohio high school junior take the ACT or SAT test in order to graduate and creates a new state school report card plan.

“This bill will give us a more accurate representation of how a school is performing in Ohio and make it easier for our parents, communities, businesses, school administrators and teachers  to understand where a school needs to improve,” said Jones. “House Bill 82 will better display our top performing schools and help demonstrate a model on how lower performing schools can improve. I’m proud to sponsor this legislation and look forward to seeing how this bill improves our education system.”

Current state law requires all high school students to take a nationally standardized college admission assessment. H.B. 82 allows parents or guardians of a high school student to opt the student out of taking a nationally standardized college admissions assessment, beginning with students who enter the 9th grade for the first time in the school year that follows the bill’s effective date.

Jones noted that ACT testing scores are a part of the equation for formulating a school districts’ “career readiness” score within the state school report cards, which can have an overall impact of economic and workforce development issues for communities. 

Jones applauded Senate-added provisions to H.B. 82 that modify Ohio’s report card metrics for K-12 schools by creating a system with five graded components and a five-star rating system in place of letter grades. 

Under the plan, the five rated components are Achievement, Progress, Gap Closing, Early Literacy, and Graduation Rate. A sixth component – College, Career, Workforce, and Military Readiness – serves as a report-only, non-graded measure for three years. 

The bill also includes a student opportunity profile containing report-only information that is not rated as part of the report card.

“With these new report card metrics, Ohio, parents, students, teachers and school officials are able to get a better understanding of school performance and find solutions to further improve our education system in our state,” said Jones.

The bill is supported by many education groups including, Ohio Excels, Buckeye Association of School Administrators, Ohio Education Association and Ohio School Counselor Association among others.

H.B. 82 passed the house with a vote of 91-3 and passed the Senate with a vote of 32-1.