Thousands of NM Students Walk Out of Class to Protest Common Core Testing
Thousands of frustrated New Mexico high school students walked out of class yesterday protesting against Common Core testing.
The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) is the test that is administered in New Mexico, which can also be used in school grades and teacher evaluations.
Students at both Albuquerque High School and nearby Highland High School walked out of classes to protest against taking the exams. They held signs and walked the sidewalks chanting at supporters who honked their horns.
The Associated Press reported:
Maya Quinones, 18, an Albuquerque High School senior, said administrators warned her that participating in the walkout might prevent her from taking part in graduation ceremonies.
"If we make something happen, if next year comes around and the PARCC test is gone, then I feel like we're successful," said Quinones, an organizer of the protest. "And you know what? As long as I get my diploma, I'm all right. I don't have to walk in line."
Julie Guevara, 16, said students believe the testing is taking away from their overall education.
"We hope the governor hears us and does something about this," Guevara said. "We're not going away and plan to do this again until the testing is done."
Gov. Susana Martinez's office did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.
Students in each grade across the country started taking the exams that are aligned with Common Core standards. The tests outline language and math skills that should be mastered in each grade.
New Mexico is one of a dozen states, including Colorado, Pennsylvania and New York, that is beginning to administer the rigorous exams this year.
The tests have angered both parents and students, who claim distract from real learning and put additional stress on kids and teachers.
Many parents and students have already opted out of the exams this year, while others are trying to lobby lawmakers and educational official for change.
Last week, Gov. Rick Scott suspended spring testing for 11th graders in Florida.
Watch the local report below from KRQE in New Mexico.