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ESD retracts test score deadline

Home School Legal Defense Association assisted a home schooling family in the South Coast Education Service District threatened with legal action if they did not submit standardized test scores by September 1 of each designated testing year. Oregon Administrative Rules 581-021-0026 requires that children in grades 3, 5, 8, and 10 be tested at these grade levels no later than August 15. Upon the request of the superintendent of the education service district (ESD), the parent or legal guardian must submit the results of the examination to the ESD.

However, state law contains no deadline for submission of the test scores. South Coast ESD had no authority to impose a September 1 deadline. (In fact, it may not be possible for test scores from an examination administered on August 15 to be available by September 1.) In the absence of any particular deadline appearing in either the statutes or administrative rules, the law allows parents a reasonable time in which to submit requested test scores.

HSLDA attorney Dewitt Black informed South Coast ESD that it would be entirely inappropriate to initiate any legal action against a family not submitting requested test scores by September 1. In response, South Coast ESD sent out a memorandum to all home school families telling them to disregard the September 1 deadlines previously imposed and to submit the scores within a reasonable time.

- Dewitt T. Black