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Gov. Jerry Brown has signed legislation to de-emphasize standardized test scores when measuring the performance of California schools, his office announced today.

Senate Bill 1458, by Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, requires other factors, such as graduation rates and college-going rates, to be used in calculating a school's Academic Performance Index.

The Democratic governor vetoed similar legislation by Steinberg last year. At the time, Brown suggested local panels could be used to evaluate schools, a concept included in the bill he ultimately signed.

Steinberg said in a prepared statement that he believes the measure will be one of the most significant education bills of the decade, "fundamentally changing what we teach and how we measure accomplishment."

Supporters of the legislation have said it could make schools more innovative, allowing them to avoid teaching "to the test." Opponents said it could weaken school accountability.



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