Kitchener-Waterloo

OECTA calls for standardized tests to be postponed until 2022

The Ontario English Catholic teachers union is calling on the provincial government to postpone standardized testing until 2022. 

Waterloo president Patrick Etmanski says the results would not be authentic

Standardized school testing should be postponed for at least one school year. The Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association is calling on the government to put the test on hold. (Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Press)

The Ontario English Catholic teachers union is calling on the provincial government to postpone standardized testing until 2022. 

President Liz Stuart recently told CBC News that "students have not been receiving the same education that they would get if they were in classrooms."

"My hope would be that the government recognizes that and that we suspend [tests] for another year. I think taking away that additional stress on everybody and making it so that we can truly focus on rebuilding is more important."

Results not authentic

The local president of the Waterloo Catholic Teachers Association, Patrick Etmanski, agrees. He says the 2021 school year will look very different from previous years.

"I'm not sure what we'll be testing and whether the results of that test will be authentic," said Etmanski.

"Coming out of this year with school closures, I don't know how we can compare year over year, next year to last year, or the following year. I mean we would have a huge asterisk beside it for sure." 

Standardized tests for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year were cancelled in March. Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce said at the time that the cancellation would not affect graduation.

According to the Education Quality and Accountability Office's website, testing is still scheduled for January through to June 2021.

Etmanski says the fall school year is still up in the air and if there is a second wave of COVID-19, online learning will continue.

"If we have a second wave, we won't be going back," said Etmanski.

"If kids are going to go into a standardized test and not be successful just because of the events that have happened ... in the world, then why would we be bothering to doing the test."

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