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State to release high school test results today

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MCA-II tests
Piles of answer sheets and test booklets for the 11th grade MCA-II.
MPR Photo/Tom Weber

The Minnesota Department of Education will release statewide figures today showing how many students passed a math test this spring that had many worried about whether they'll graduate.

This was the first year that the MCA Standardized test for 11th grade math also included a test called the GRAD. For the most part, every high school junior had to pass the GRAD to get a diploma.

There were worries that failing this test in 11th grade wouldn't leave enough time before graduation for re-takes. Students took the math GRAD last month with that threat hanging over their head.

But the education bill that has since become law changes those rules.  Now, anyone who fails the GRAD will have to re-take it at least twice. If they still fail, they can graduate if they meet all of their school's other requirements for getting a diploma.

Critics say that deflates the test's importance - and amounts to 'three strikes and you graduate.'  Lawmakers who worked on the issue, though, say they needed more time to find a long-term solution.

Schools will learn today just which students failed and need to re-test.  Students can start taking the re-tests on July 7.