Check out this response received from WAVA in 2015 after a parent sent in their Opt-Out letter. The parent has purchased their own materials to homeschool next year in order to avoid Common Core and the testing. The parent felt WAVA was not a bad program and that the child was successful, but Common Core ruined it for them and they were sad about that fact.
“There is no “opt out” option for state testing at WAVA. Though middle school testing is not required for high school graduation, it is required for re-enrollment to WAVA for next school year which was explained on all enrollment forms and in our handbook; documents which were signed upon enrollment indicating that you would participate and provide transportation.
As a school we have had to become much more strict requiring testing for students. A parent can choose not to test for any reason, but if they do so, the school will receive a zero for that student’s scores which are averaged into the overall school results used by OSPI‘s Digital Learning Department (DLD) to determine whether or not online programs are allowed to continue operating.
WAVA has always been under a microscope to prove that online learning works, that students are successful in this model, and that we deserve to be an option for the families of WA. When we just look at the scores of our students who test, we do really well and meet the bar. However, right now, because of all the zeros we receive averaged in, we DO NOT meet the bar. This means that OSPI can rescind our approval to operate in WA and close WAVA making it no longer a choice option for our 4300 students. Unfortunately, OSPI views WAVA as a “failing school” which you and I know that we are not.
You can see this data here:https://eds.ospi.k12.wa.us/WAI/IndexReport/dropdown
Our current score is 3.55 and we have to make a minimum of 3.77 to get into the orange range and meet the minimum requirements to stay open. The zeros we receive from those who want to “opt out” make the difference and could ultimately be the single factor that closes WAVA.
So, because of this dynamic, we are becoming much more strict about requiring that all students participate. Those who choose not to participate will not be re-enrolled in WAVA in future years. When I say “we” I mean the WAVA Admin team, K12, the Omak Superintendent, and the Omak School Board. This decision is supported and encouraged by both OSPI DLD and the Office of Civil Rights as being legal and reasonable for the survival of the WAVA program. All of our enrollment documents and handbooks reflect this requirement and are signed and agreed to by parents during enrollment each year.”
Quick commentary on WAVA’s statement. Where is the local control and to what extent has the US Dept. of Education created this situation?