Of all the bills sitting on the desk of Gov. Jerry Brown, perhaps none is more important to the future of education in California than Assembly Bill 484. Sponsored by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson and authored by Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla, D-Concord, AB 484 would end the standardized tests that have been in place since 1999 and move California forward in implementing tests based on the new Common Core State Standards.
The new standards represent the first major academic overhaul since 1997, and along with clear new goals for student learning come new assessments. Students will take the new tests using computers (or iPads or similar devices), which means our local school districts need to figure out how to get those devices and the supporting technology such as Internet access into the hands of San Diego County’s 500,000 students. That’s why districts in the county have been hard at work preparing for the new standards and tests. Many San Diego County districts participated in earlier “pilots” of the new tests.