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Georgia receives testing waiver from U.S. Department of Education for middle school advanced courses

Flexibility eliminates double-testing for middle school students

MEDIA CONTACT: Meghan Frick, GaDOE Communications Office, 404-463-4246,

April 13, 2018 – Georgia received approval from the U.S. Department of Education (US ED) April 12 to reduce testing and avoid duplication for students taking advanced courses in middle school.

Increasing numbers of Georgia students take high school English Language Arts, math, and science courses in middle school – without a waiver, most of those students would be required to take both the middle school End of Grade (EOG) and high school End of Course (EOC) tests. The waiver approved by US ED today allows those students to take the End of Course test only.

“This waiver provides both continued flexibility and a further reduction of testing here in Georgia,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods said. “We continue to seek every possible opportunity to reduce and avoid duplicative testing and reserve that time for teaching and learning. This also ensures that these students are being assessed by the test that aligns with the instruction they received.”

Under its previous Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) waiver, Georgia received flexibility from the U.S. Department of Education to avoid double-testing for math and science. Today’s waiver continues that flexibility under the new Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and expands it to English Language Arts.

This flexibility will take effect immediately and apply to the spring 2018 Georgia Milestones assessment window.