[UPDATE] GA High School Graduation Test Tossed

By: Donnitra Gilbert Email
By: Donnitra Gilbert Email

Juniors and Seniors in the Thomasville area are taking the Georgia Graduation Test - a test that may be thrown out.

Testing began Monday (3/21) for students at Thomasville High and Thomas County Central High School.

The Georgia Board of Education initiated a proposal to toss out the state-wide test earlier this month. Many school officials agree with the decision because some students have been held back from graduation for not passing the test.

The state board is still awaiting comments from Georgia residents before they cast their votes in April.

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Mary Beacarstens is one of 100,000 juniors and seniors getting ready to take the Georgia High School Graduation test.

"I'm a little nervous and I have a little anxiety. It's something extra to add another stressful thing to do," said Thomas County Central High School Student Mary Beacarstens.

Anxiety is running high at Thomas County Central High School in Thomasville because in two weeks, students will go face-to-face with a five-part test that ultimately decides if they receive a high school diploma.

According to the Georgia Department of Education over the past three years, 3-thousand students petitioned the state board after failing the test multiple times.

Thomas County Central's Graduation coach Karen Jones said students have five chances to take the test, but not all students pass within those attempts.

"We still have students still coming from 1999 who's still trying to pass the test or they can choose to go and take the GED," said Thomas County Central High School Graduation Coach Karen Jones.

The state board of education will meet Wednesday to start the process of tossing out the test that's been around for more than a decade.

"I do think the test should be phased out . The test is so far past when they learned the material ... this is things they were taught in 9th and 10th grade," said Jones.

But the Georgia Department of Education says it has to give the public 30 days to comment before deciding yay or nay.

Testing at Thomas County Central High School begins March 21st.


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  • by Victoria Location: Georgia on May 15, 2011 at 05:04 PM
    The GHSGT should most definitely be thrown out. It should have been thrown out a long time ago. I took the test a few years ago and many of my classmates including myself stressed over it and some of us failed. There were many of us who worked hard all those years and got to the very end and could literally see ourselves walking across that stage and it got torn away in just a few seconds of reading a paper telling you that for the 3rd time you failed one portion of a stupid test. For those people of class of 2006 that was a huge slap in the face. People telling you all those years you have to go to school to graduate but get to the end and you can't even get you diploma with your classmates??? That was horrible. The GHSGT needs to go. I'm glad it may be happening. It's stressful and just ridiculous.
  • by Georgia on Mar 22, 2011 at 05:16 PM
    I think that the GHSGT should be tossed out! It's not fair for students that work hard in school, and then fail the grad test and not be able to graduate. It's not necessary for [us] juniors to take that test 2 years after we have learned the material. We don't even "review" for it. We do a couple of questions on the board and that's it. We just continue on with our regular lesson, and it's also not fair for [us] juniors that had "SUCKY" teachers that only wrote stuff on the board and had us copy it and then have a test on the material. It's not fair! Do away with the GHSGT!
  • by it is what it is on Mar 21, 2011 at 05:29 PM
    So let's just dumb down the schools even more... We aren't educating our children, we are processing them.
  • by Local Teacher/Parent Location: S. GA on Mar 14, 2011 at 12:17 AM
    We are testing kids too much. These tests are not exactly easy, especially the social studies and science tests. 11th graders spend a week taking just the GHSGT and then take EOCTs (end of course tests) in several courses as well. Add in any AP exams they are taking, and that is about 2 weeks worth of instruction lost due to testing. Then you have to add in the time spent reviewing for these tests. Sadly, there are students that work hard in school, do well enough to pass their classes, but do not perform well on high-stakes tests. It is time to do away with the GHSGT, in my opinion. If they can pass their classes with the EOCT score factored into their grade, they should get a diploma like everyone else. I would love to see an estimate of how much money is spent on the state level as well as on the school system level preparing for and administering these tests.
  • by Kevin aka Reality Location: Monticello on Mar 12, 2011 at 12:50 PM
    Gee , and we wonder why the kids nowadays are as smart as farm rocks?
  • by Beth Location: Valdosta on Mar 10, 2011 at 07:19 PM
    Being a parent of a special needs child that got a Special ED diploma. When I ask his 10th grade teacher if he could pass it she said NO. The principal, counsler gave no chance or help to any special Ed students. 15 students got special ed dipolma on graudation day. Why football and band had Priority. He got a GED 3 years later, I would have moved 9 years ago from Ga if I know how they treated students with special needs. Also they can join JRROTC put can not get any awards because they take special ed classes. I will be glad when we sell the house and move out of Ga.
  • by mom Location: valdosta on Mar 10, 2011 at 07:50 AM
    As a mom of a special ed child in high school, my son is passing and maintaining an A average on regular ed courses taught in a special ed setting by wonderful teachers. My child has severe anxiety about tests and does not test well but his teachers say he knows the material and works hard every day in class. My child's diploma should not be decided by one single test. He has worked hard in school and has proved he knows the material in each class and should be rewarded with his diploma without the stress and anxiety of one test to say so. Not every child fits in that perfect round hole.
  • by smartypants Location: ga on Mar 9, 2011 at 06:56 PM
    if you honesty think having a graduation coach is a waste of money then you are completely and totally out of your simple little mind. I know FOR A FACT that there are some graduation coaches that do more than "coach" the students for graduation. There is one that I happen to know personally and he is also a guidance counselor and might has well be a assistant principal. They have helped our students reach the top in our state and continues to raise the numbers of students who graduation. So you speak of what you do NOT know....
  • by Why wonder on Mar 9, 2011 at 05:37 PM
    Go online to www.gadoe.org and look at practice test for the GHSGT. It is more than signing a name! Obviously you are not familiar with Georgia curriculum. Math in Georgia is extremely difficult. The recommended EOCT would count 25%. The information would still be tested just not 2 or 3 years after the information was delivered.
  • by Kevin aka Reality Location: Monticello on Mar 9, 2011 at 03:43 PM
    Why not ? Better yet why go to school at all ? Lets just hand out Diplomas , and make them all "Edumacated". Then the dummies wont have their sensabilities hurt , and we can publish ridiculously high numbers. Makes me have much confidence in the future of America , knowing some idiot who cant spell will be running the Country.
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