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CA High Schoolers with Disabilities Escape This Year's Exit Exam

California high school students with disabilities in the upcoming 2006 graduating class will likely "be exempt from passing the state's exit exam under an agreement announced Thursday," according to a story in the Sacramento Bee.

After several weeks of negotiation, officials agreed to put a bill by Sen. Gloria Romero, D-Los Angeles, on a fast track that will free high school seniors in special education from passing the controversial math and English exam that is a graduation requirement this year for the first time.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is expected to sign the bill, which will settle one piece of the lawsuit filed by Disability Rights Advocates 5 years ago. DRA's Melissa Kasnitz told reporters that while the legislation is a good move, it won't help students in future classes -- and so the lawsuit continues.

Read Exit-exam deal struck for California students with disabilities (Scripps Howard News Service)


I think that disabled students should have to take some sort of exit exam. Not all disabled people are affected mentally. I think that by not making disabled people take an exit exam is giving all of them an easy way out.

Exempting students from exit exams does not address the larger issue. Legislators should be asking the question: why weren't these students prepared in the first place? The California DOE may need to reevaluate and restructure its special education programming. Furthermore, allowing this exemption seems to mean they support the belief that all persons with disabilities are incapable of math and english mastery, which is definitely not the case.

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