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Senate Education Chair: We'll look at the high school testing issue before next year

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OLYMPIA, Washington — The state Senate does not appear likely to consider a bill that would temporarily eliminate the need to pass a science test to graduate from high school.

The House overwhelmingly approved the measure on Wednesday, with lawmakers saying they expected it to pass the Senate as well. But the Senate voted Thursday morning to send House Bill 2214 to committee.

The chair of the Senate Education Committee said he does not plan to hold a hearing on the bill or advance it during this or the next special session. Sen. Steve Litzow says the topic of high school graduation tests will be given after the Legislature finishes its special session work and before the next Legislature convenes in January 2016.

In addition to helping an estimated 2,000 kids get their diplomas this spring, the testing bill would also simplify the state testing system, getting rid of all the complicated alternatives to passing high school exams.

Instead, students who do not pass the statewide tests in high school would just be required to take more classes in those subject areas in order to earn a diploma.

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