The administration of the Oklahoma School Testing Program (OSTP) will take place from April 2, 2018, to April 27, 2018. All students in grades 3 through 8 will be administered OSTP tests in English/Language Arts and Mathematics and students in grades 5 and 8 will also be administered test in Science during this testing window.
Students in grade 11 will be administered the ACT as a part of the new College and Career Readiness Assessment. In addition, to meet federal requirements for science content assessment, students will also take the OSTP College- and Career-Ready Science Content Assessment, which will be administered with 50 percent of the test items from the life sciences and 50 percent from the physical sciences (physics, chemistry and physical science). All 11th-grade students will be assessed in science content to meet new federal ESSA requirements, even if they have previously taken a state science assessment (the 2017 OSTP Science Assessment or the 2016 Biology end of instruction exam).
Some students will be assessed through the Oklahoma Alternative Assessment Program (OAAP) in lieu of participation in the OSTP, based upon criteria determined through their Special Education Individual Education Program. The OAAP testing window is March 26-May 11, 2018.
It is important to know that the Oklahoma State Department of Education will penalize school districts that do not test 95 percent of their students. Title 70, § 1210.508 and § 1210.523 of the Oklahoma Statutes requires that the Oklahoma State Board of Education conduct criterion-referenced tests in grades 3 through 8 and conduct college and career readiness exams in grades 9 through 12. In addition to the statutory requirements, the Oklahoma State Board of Education’s administrative rule 210:10-13-2 states that “All public school districts shall administer the state mandated academic achievement tests of the OSTP to all students enrolled in the designated grades.” Therefore, school districts are required to provide a test to every student enrolled in respective testing grades. Both the statute and the language in the promulgated rule require every school district to administer a test to every student enrolled in a tested grade/subject area.
Because of these statutory and rule requirements, there is no “opt-out” option offered through the Oklahoma State Department of Education. In addition, state law (70 O.S. § 5-117) says that local school boards of education do not have the authority to take actions inconsistent with state law or rules that have been adopted by the Oklahoma State Board of Education.