Capital School District resolution on state testing passes

DOVER — The Capital School District Board of Education unanimously passed a resolution Wednesday to formally reinstate its support of House Bill 50.

HB 50, a bill passed in June 2014, protects parents’ right to opt their child out of the state’s standardized test — the Smarter Balanced assessment.

Despite easily passing in the House and Senate with widespread support on both sides of the aisle, Gov. Jack Markell, a Democrat, vetoed the bill.

The legislation is back in the news after a veto override was attempted Jan. 14 but failed to attract the two-thirds votes needed.

Capital was the first district to declare its support last summer. Soon after, districts and community organizations across the state followed suit.

School board president Mathew Lindell proposed the resolution reinstating support at Capital’s Jan. 19 meeting but it was tabled after disagreements over specific wording were brought to light.

After a lengthy debate on Wednesday, the four board members (board member Ralph Taylor was absent) were able to agree on wording. The first draft of the resolution was written by Mr. Lindell alone and the version passed Wednesday included input from all members.

“This will get the legislators on the other side of the fence to see things from our point of view. We will not get face to face or toe to toe with them, there just aren’t enough hours in the day,” said board member Sean Christiansen. “If we feel this way about our students, staff and parents, we need to put it out there.”

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