A recent Iowa House Republican Newsletter has an update on state board action on science standards and statewide assessments: [The next three paragraphs are quoted directly from the newsletter (page 5), but I haven’t indented the whole thing, so that I can preserve the indented quote as it appears in the newsletter.]

“The authority for the State Board to determine Iowa’s next assessment without the legislature weighing in is still questionable. Iowa Code 256.7, which outlines the duties of the State Board, requires rules in sub-section 21 to implement a new assessment for the 2016/17 school year. This section also establishes the task force meant to make recommendations for the new assessment. The final language in the subsection states:

“The state board shall submit to the general assembly recommendations the state board deems appropriate for modifications of assessments of student progress . . .”

Whether the charge to the State Board in this last bit of language is to seek legisla-tive approval or merely to notify the legislature, the Department of Education has de-termined it is only for notification. As such, they have moved ahead with the develop-ment of rules.”