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Biden Campaign Won’t Commit to State Testing Waivers During COVID-19 Crisis

If elected, would former Vice President Joe Biden let schools off the hook for administering federally mandated standardized tests this year? 

A policy adviser was noncommittal on the issue Thursday, saying such a decision would be left to Biden’s transition team and to a new administration.

“The honest answer is this is an important question a Biden-Harris transition team would have to look into,” Biden Policy Director Stef Feldman told a virtual panel held by the Education Writers Association. “In some ways, the answer to this question depends on how much progress we can make in supporting our schools and getting them up and running.”

The statement comes after U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos told state education leaders in September not to expect additional testing waivers during the 2020-21 school year if President Donald Trump is reelected.

It also comes after a 2020 campaign in which Biden has repeatedly expressed skepticism about standardized tests and using their results for high-stakes purposes. That may have led some to assume he would be more open to waiving the testing requirements for an additional school year. 

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