Oklahoma State Superintendent Janet Barresi is raising concern about a bill before the Legislature that would eliminate state testing in social studies and geography.
Senate Bill 1654 would eliminate several state-mandated tests beginning in the fall, including social studies in grades five and eight, and geography in grade seven.
Barresi says the seventh-grade world geography test is the only time students are tested on geographic knowledge.
“Thousands of Oklahomans sacrificed their lives fighting for it and thousands more are prepared to stand up for it today,” says Barresi. “If this bill passes — combined with another law enacted last year that diminishes end-of-instruction exams — it is possible that a student in Oklahoma could go through 12th grade without ever having been assessed on America’s heritage or values.”
Barresi says if the proposal passes, students won't be tested on their knowledge of pre-Civil War U.S. History, including the Declaration of Independence, the writing of the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Civil War.
The bill narrowly passed a House committee and is pending on the House floor.