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Senate approves dropping STAR tests
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SACRAMENTO  (AP) — The state Senate has approved a bill that would end traditional standardized testing of students in reading, math and social science, as the top federal education official threatened to withhold federal funds if the measure becomes law.

California schools have used the STAR tests to measure student learning and school performance since 1999.

But AB494 would replace the multiple-choice, pencil-and-paper tests next spring with new language and math tests designed to follow the Common Core curriculum standards.

The measure passed Tuesday on a 25-7 vote and now returns to the Assembly.

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan objected that the abrupt shift would leave the state without test scores for a year while the state adopts the new system.

State officials support the change.