Illinois' Writing Test Back, But Without Funding
But lawmakers haven't given the state board of education extra money to pay for the 30-minute essay test. Board officials tell The Associated Press they've been given the same $27 million to spend on assessments next year. That budget includes the same testing requirements as last year, along with an additional writing test estimated to cost $2.5 million. The board may ask lawmakers to approve additional funding.
Proponents of the addition say writing is more important than ever as the state prepares for tougher assessments in 2014-15. Last year, less than one-third of high schools met federal education law benchmarks.
Others criticize lawmakers' spending money the state doesn't have.
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