Grout Elementary PTA stands in solidarity with all Grout Teachers and the larger Portland community in opposition of the MAP test for grades 3-8 during Comprehensive Distance Learning (CDL). We’ve mentioned this stance in our newsletters since January 18, but this edition provides you references as you assess what is best for your student, including how to opt-out of testing.  

If you are new to the MAP test, please consider watching the video What’s This Test About? Also, please read this document: 2020 MAP Remote Testing Parent Guide to understand your role and commitment during the test and what you can do to prepare your student.   

Standardized testing can be a fraught issue, students are taught to form their own opinions about issues important to them, and we encourage you to do the same around standardized tests. Here are links to the Grout PTA information about it (scroll down to the section “MAP testing”), and PPS district communication (scroll down to the bottom of the section “Maintaining a Continuity of Learning”). If you have questions from the school’s perspective, please contact Grout Assistant Principal, Katy Vawter, at kvawter@pps.net.  

OPB featured this news story, Teachers, parents question PPS plans for at-home standardized tests, by Elizabeth Miller, on Jan. 28 depicting both positions—those in support and those opposed.  

How to Opt-out or Continue with Testing

If you wish to opt-out your child from taking one or both MAP tests, complete this survey: MAP Assessment Opt-Out Form by Sunday, January 31, 2021  If you need help with this process or have any questions, please contact Katy Vawter at kvawter@pps.net or call the school at (503) 916-6209.  

MAP Testing
There are three main reasons Grout PTA does not support MAP testing during CDL. Increasing Racial Inequity and Impacts on Student Social and Emotional Health Loss of Instructional Time Unreliable Data   After reviewing all the information, if opposed, we ask you to please consider signing our petition to the Portland Public School District, with 250+ others, if you agree that this testing should be stopped until students return to buildings. You can read more and sign the petition here: http://chng.it/QZ75kV6HLy.  


In closing, and worth repeating because I think it speaks to 1-of-3 identified core objectives we have as a PTA this year, to strengthen the relationship with the school and PTA, and it hits on part of our nations new President, Joe Biden’s, inaugural speech to listen to one another even if we disagree. I deeply respect our school Principal, Denise, and Assistant Principal, Katy, and we have all shared our perspectives on MAP testing which are different. While we may disagree with one another, no respect has been lost, and if anything, I believe it has been strengthened, and for that, on behalf of the PTA and our community, am grateful.

No matter what, Grout’s Light is most definitely Bright.  

Kind Regards,
Julie Bolstad,

Grout PTA President,

juliebolstad@outook.com or 602-703-5854

Grout Elementary School PTA


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