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Superintendent Says He’ll Consider Exit Exam Alternatives

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Sacramento, CA — California´s top education official says he´s willing to consider alternatives to the mandatory high school exit exam for students who can´t pass.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O´Connell was responding to a state-mandated study that found a fifth of the class of 2006 hadn´t passed the test by eleventh grade.

Those students are the first class required to pass the assessment of their math and English skills before they can receive a diploma. O´Connell´s agreement to review alternatives is a change of heart for the superintendent who helped draft the original exam.

But a spokeswoman says O´Connell will not consider anything that would water down the standards. Options include a senior-year portfolio project where students could demonstrate skills, a community college program or an alternate diploma.