SILVER SPRING, Md. - The Montgomery County Board of Education voted unanimously Tuesday to phase out final exams for all high school students in the county.
School board members have decided to replace the current two-hour semester final exams with in class projects, papers, essays and group tests. That means Montgomery County high school students will still take tests. But starting this spring in four subjects – and next year in all subjects – there will be no more end of semester final exams.
Interim superintendent Larry Bowers said the move is about equity and closing the achievement gap.
Supporters of the change say this will add two weeks of instructional time over the school year and release the testing burden on students. Critics argue the change will place students at a disadvantage in terms of college prep and ultimately create more work for already overburdened teachers.
Hundreds of people responded to a Twitter poll we conducted before the vote, and 60 percent supported eliminating final exams.