Case of Debra P. v. Turlington
Phillips (1993) describes the landmark case of Debra P. v. Turlington:
"In the landmark Debra P. v. Turlington case, African-American students who had failed a statewide test required for a diploma in Florida challenged the testing requirement as racially based, given to affected students without adequate notice, and designed to resegregate African-American students into remedial classes. The Florida high school graduation test was a multiple-choice test of basic communication and mathematics skills applied to real-life situations. In 1979, after the test had been administered three times, approximately 2 percent of the white seniors had not passed, compared to approximately 20 percent of the African-American seniors.
The Debra P. case established two major requirements for diploma sanction testing: adequate notice and curricular validity. Adequate notice requires that students be told what a graduation test will cover several years before the test is implemented. Curricular validity means that the schools are teaching what is being tested; under Debra P., the state must collect data to demonstrate curricular validity." (pp. xviii-xix)