Q. Must my child take the history and science portions of a standardized achievement test when he takes the test at a public school?
A. The law requires that a parent submit “evidence that the child has attained a composite score in or above the fourth stanine on any nationally normed standardized achievement test…” A composite score is made-up of the language arts and mathematics portions of a standardized achievement test.
Each public school will establish their own policies for administering tests at their school. If it is the policy of a public school to administer the entire test to a group of homeschoolers, or if homeschoolers are tested with public school students, the test proctor probably will not allow a student to stop the test or leave the room.
However, if a student is required to take the entire test, only the composite score should be used for the purpose of meeting the homeschool requirements. Public school officials who work with testing may not be as familiar with the homeschool laws regarding a composite score as we are; therefore, you should discuss the testing situation with school officials ahead of time. Be sure to ask about the testing environment and scoring.
Because this could be an intimidating situation for a student, getting answers ahead of time and knowing what to expect before testing day would be helpful. Other testing options are available, including parent-administered tests. See HEAV’s testing resources.