Document Type

Honors Thesis

Publication Date

Spring 5-2016


Under current educational policy in the United States, standardized assessment is (and has been) a required element of K-12 education in order for schools to receive federal funding, most often through Title I programs. However, in 2015, many families began opting their students out of these standardized tests in several states, including Maine. This study aims to identify any possible trends associated with opting out, such as socioeconomic status or student achievement levels, and also determine the potential impact of certain subgroups of students opting out of standardized tests, such as misrepresentation of a school’s results because of skewed test scores. Through surveying superintendents of schools with less than 50% of their students participating in the test, this study found that there are several potential factors that could affect opting out, the most common of which is the influence of socioeconomic status.