TULSA - By the 2014-15 school year, students in Oklahoma will spend as many as forty days per year just taking assessment tests, a full quarter of the school calendar.
That's because the State Department of Education is imposing new "common core" standards, and at least one middle school principal says "the logistics behind state testing has just gotten out of control."
Rob Miller is the site principal for Jenks Middle School.
He tells KRMG parents have expressed alarm and opposition as they learn about the new testing standards.
"Really the biggest concern I think (is) parents want to have a voice. They want the message to be that 'we think our kids are over-tested, and we don't want more, we want less. We want to look at how we can reduce this, not add more.'"
They may have reason for alarm.
"We will go to five tests for each student in Language Arts, and four tests in math, rather than just one in each," Miller told KRMG. "They're all going to be online. They're going to require the schools to purchase a lot of technology, and spend up to forty days of assessment."
"One fourth of our school year will be spent testing," he added, "and that's just excessive."
And, Miller points out, they can't test all 1,600 students at once, so they take a number of them from each classroom, which means teachers have missing students every time the tests are administered.
That makes it more difficult to keep all their students on the same page, as they try to prepare them for still more tests.
"We're already overtested," Miller says, "and it's just going to get worse. We need to do something to change the trajectory."