GHSGT or GHSWT Waiver and Variance
What is a GHSGT or GHSWT waiver?
A Georgia High School Graduation Tests (GHSGT) or Georgia High School Writing Test (GHSWT) waiver is a decision by the State Board of Education (SBOE) not to apply all or part of the requirements of the GHSGT or GHSWT to a Georgia student who meets certain basic qualifications.
Who may apply for a GHST/GHSWT waiver?
You may apply for a GHSGT/GHSWT waiver if:
- You have a disability that makes you incapable of passing a section of the test, even with specified testing accommodations, and your disability has been documented in an Individual Education Program (IEP) (it should be noted, however, that merely having a documented disability does not automatically mean that a waiver will be granted; or
- Due to substantial hardship beyond your control, you have not had a reasonable opportunity to pass a section of the GHSGT or the GHSWT.
How do I apply for a GHSGT or GHSWT waiver?
SBOE Rule 160-1-3-.09 (available on the Department of Education website at http://public.doe.k12.ga.us/_documents/doe/legalservices/160-1-3-.09.pdf requires that the student (or the parent or guardian of a student under 18 years old) request consideration for a waiver through the local school superintendent. In the request, you or your parent/guardian must indicate the section(s) of the test for which you are requesting consideration for a waiver. You are reminded that your IEP must document a disability or you should provide documented evidence of a substantial hardship. If the waiver is for a hardship, you must fully explain why you feel the hardship has impacted your ability to pass the test.
What is a GHSGT/GHSWT variance?
A GHSGT/GHSWT variance is a decision by the State Board of Education (SBOE) to modify all or part of the literal requirements of the GHSGT/GHSWT.
Who may apply for a GHSGT/GHSWT variance?
Any student or parent/guardian of a student under the age of 18 may apply for a variance. The variance will be reviewed by the State Board and you may be granted a GHSGT/GHSWT variance if all of the following conditions are met:
- You have attempted the relevant section(s) of the GHSGT or GHWST four or more times without passing: and
- You have successfully completed a structured remedial class (es) after each required attempt to pass the relevant section(s) of the GHSGT/GHSWT; and
- You have passed any of three of the graduation tests (four content sections of the GHSGT and GHSWT); and
- You have met the attendance and course unit requirements for graduation defined by the SBOE for your graduating class; and if you have a 90 percent of better attendance record, excluding excused absences, while enrolled in grades 9-12;and
- At any time you have obtained a scaled score that falls within one standard error of measurement (SEM) for passing the relevant section of the GHSGT or GHSWT; and
- You have successfully passed each of the End-of-the Course Tests (EOCT) related to the sections of the GHSGT or the GHSWT in which the variance is being sought.
How do I apply for a GHSGT or GHSWT variance?
SBOE Rule 160-1-3-.09 (available on the Department of Education website at http://public.doe.k12.ga.us/_documents/doe/legalservices/160-1-3-.09.pdf requires that the student (or the student’s parent or guardian if the student is under 18) request consideration for a variance through the local school superintendent. In the request, you or your parent/guardian must indicate: the section(s) of the test for which you are requesting consideration for a variance; and, the specific facts which would justify the variance; and, what will be accomplished in lieu of the rule requirement (s); and, the reason why the variance requested would serve the purpose of the underlying requirement. Check with your school counselor if you have questions about the process.