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Exit Exams: Remediation and Retake Opportunities

Some students require additional academic supports in order to pass exit exams. Funding for remediation varies, and according to the 2006 report State High School Exit Exams: A Challenging Year by the Center on Education Policy, funding tends to disappear once the exit exam has been in place for a few years.

Why does it matter? States, schools and districts need to know the weaknesses and strengths of the students in order to properly target instruction and accelerate learning. Additionally, students benefit when they have additional chances to take an exit exam after initial failure.

Highlights:

  • Schools/districts must offer: 19 states provide funding or require local school districts to provide funding for student remediation.
  • Students must participate: 10 states require that a student who does not pass must participate in remediation.
  • Number of chances to retake: Retakes are available for students still in high school and for adult students who are interested in receiving their diploma. The number of retakes allowed ranges from three to an unlimited number of opportunities.
  • Methodology: This information was collected from state statutes, rules and regulations, and state education agency Web sites, and will be updated as as new policies and programs are enacted.

    Sources for all data points are accessible through this link.

    Last updated: June 26, 2007

    Research conducted by Michael Colasanti.  Please contact Jennifer Dounay Zinth at 303.299.3689 or jdounay@ecs.org with comments or questions about this database.

    Remediation
    Alabama Schools/districts must offer: Yes. Schools are required to provide remediation, but can decide how and what kind to use.
    Student must participate: Yes. Students who fail the graduation exam are required to participate in remediation, unless a parent/guardian provides written permission to opt-out.
    Number of chances to retake: Students have six opportunities to pass before completing high school, and unlimited opportunities to pass after high school. Additionally, students who have failed the exam may return to high school for remediation until the age of 21.
    Other major state initiatives: The state department of education's High Hopes program gives grants to school districts to develop remediation programs in collaboration with community colleges, universities, and nonprofit community-based organizations to provide tutoring, mentoring and after-school assistance to high school students who have failed or are in danger of failing the graduation exam.
    Alaska Schools/districts must offer: No
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Twice per year before the end of grade 12. After grade 12, twice per year indefinitely (testing fee may be charged by the district).
    American Samoa
    Arizona Schools/districts must offer: No. However, most districts do provide remediation.
    Student must participate: No. However, students must participate in remediation to qualify for the exit exam augmentation option.
    Number of chances to retake: Once each semester in 11th and 12th grade (4 total retakes). After grade 12, an unlimited number of times if all other graduation requirements have been met.
    Other major state initiatives: The state offers funds for tutoring to any junior or senior who has failed any part of the exit exam.
    Arkansas Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: Yes
    Number of chances to retake: Students have 3 chances to retake before graduation, and if not passed, must take and pass an alternative assessment to graduate.
    California Schools/districts must offer: Yes. The state provides funds to districts for remediation services.
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Two retake opportunities in grade 11 and three retake opportunities in grade 12. After grade 12, students may retake the exam three times per year indefinitely until they pass, so long as they have completed all other graduation requirements and are enrolled in an adult education program.
    Colorado
    Connecticut
    Delaware
    District of Columbia
    Florida Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate:
    Yes
    Number of chances to retake: 6 before high school graduation, unlimited after 12th grade
    Georgia Schools/districts must offer: No
    Students must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Students have 5 opportunities to pass in their 11th and 12th grade years.
    Hawaii
    Idaho Schools/districts must offer: No
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: For students who do not pass, they may appeal to their school district to give them an alternate assessment that meets state standards. They must be in their senior year to appeal.
    Illinois
    Indiana Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: No, however, a student may not obtain a test waiver if remediation is not completed.
    Number of chances to retake: 4 before high school graduation (1 chance per semester)
    Iowa
    Kansas
    Kentucky
    Louisiana Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Before graduation, students have six chances for English language arts and math, four for science and social studies. After graduation, there is no limit to the number of retakes.
    Maine
    Maryland Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: Yes
    Number of chances to retake: Three times per year beginning when the student takes the course associated with the exam.
    Massachusetts Schools/districts must offer: No
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Four before graduation
    Michigan
    Minnesota Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: District determines the number of retakes
    Mississippi Schools/districts must offer: No
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Three times per year before graduation, unlimited after 12th grade
    Missouri
    Montana
    Nebraska
    Nevada Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: Yes
    Number of chances to retake: Six before graduation, unlimited after graduation
    New Hampshire
    New Jersey Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Unlimited retest opportunities before and after 12th grade
    New Mexico Schools/districts must offer: No
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Students have four make-up opportunities to pass before graduation, and may retake the exam for up to five years after 12th grade.
    New York Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Unlimited opportunities to pass before graduation, local district determines if student is eligible to retake after 12th grade
    North Carolina Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: Yes
    Number of chances to retake: Two before graduation (end-of-course)
    North Dakota
    Ohio Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: Yes
    Number of chances to retake: Six before graduation, unlimited after 12th grade
    Oklahoma Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: Yes
    Number of chances to retake: Three times per year
    Oregon
    Pennsylvania
    Puerto Rico
    Rhode Island
    South Carolina Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: Yes
    Number of chances to retake: Two chances per year before graduation, unlimited after 12th grade provided the student is in adult education program
    South Dakota
    Tennessee Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: Yes
    Number of chances to retake: Three per year before graduation
    Texas Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Students both in school and out of school have unlimited opportunities to retake the exams, but must do so on regularly scheduled exam dates.
    Utah
    Vermont
    Virgin Islands
    Virginia Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: Students have three opportunities per year to pass, before and after 12th grade
    Washington Schools/districts must offer: Yes
    Student must participate: No
    Number of chances to retake: The state will pay for up to four retakes before graduation
    West Virginia
    Wisconsin
    Wyoming


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