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BOE waives Gateway requirement

SUWANEE - The Gwinnett County Board of Education waived a promotion requirement for 208 elementary and middle school students who failed a portion of the Gateway test but had at least a C average in class.

Of the 21,200 fourth- and seventh-graders required to pass each section of the Criterion Referenced Competency Tests (CRCT) and the 21,617 fifth- and eighth-graders required to pass the Georgia Writing Assessments, 360 did not do as well as would be expected based on their classroom grades, according to a news release.

As part of the school system's annual Assessment Review Procedure, these students qualified for an automatic review conducted by a committee of teachers, principals and central office administrators. The committee reviewed each student's Gateway scores, classroom performance, standardized test data and other assessment information, and evidence of extenuating circumstances, such as a death in the family, that might have caused the student to perform below expectations on the test.

"Our goal is to ensure students have learned the necessary knowledge and skills to be successful at the next grade level. This process is an extra step taken to ensure we meet this goal," Chief Academic Officer Steve Flynt said. "The Review Procedure allows us to look at individual cases, ensuring that one test is not used as the sole criterion for determining retention when a student has earned an average of C or better all year."

The school board waived the Gateway test for 208 students, recommending summer school for 179 of them. The other 152 students will be required to retake the Gateway this summer.