ERIC Number: ED203427
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981
Reference Count: N/A
Legal Challenges to Minimum Competency Examinations.
Jones, Thomas N.
Chapter 6 of a book on school law attempts to identify and examine a few of the legal problems raised by minimum competency programs, which make successful performance on a standardized test a condition for receipt of a high school diploma. The three areas where minimum competency tests are most likely to be challenged are the equal protection and due process clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The ultimate legality of a state-mandated minimum competency program will depend primarily upon the care and skill of those who create, design, and administer the test. Recent litigation would suggest that the state, when developing a competency-based educational program, should adhere to the following fundamental guidelines: (1) students must be given adequate notice that they will be expected to pass a functional literacy test prior to receipt of their diploma; (2) efforts must be made to avoid any cultural bias in the construction of the test; (3) the test must have curricular and instructional validity; and (4) the determination of cut-off levels of proficiency must be made only after long and careful study of the results of pilot testing programs. (Author/MLF)
Descriptors: Court Litigation, Due Process, Equal Protection, Graduation Requirements, Legal Problems, Minimum Competency Testing, Racial Discrimination, Secondary Education, State Legislation
Not available separately; see EA 013 472.
Publication Type: Books; Information Analyses; Legal/Legislative/Regulatory Materials
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Organization on Legal Problems of Education, Topeka, KS.
Note: Chapter 6 of "School Law for a New Decade" (EA 013 472). For related documents, see EA 013 472-493.