Oregon Students Can Use Spell Check on Writing Tests Educators want to take emphasis off typos By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Dec 16, 2010 6:10 PM CST 22 comments Comments Spell check is fine on writing tests, say Oregon educators. (Shutterstock) (Newser) – Grist for curmudgeons: Oregon students will be able to use spell check on state writing tests next year, reports the Oregonian. The new rule applies only to middle-schoolers and high school students, not to younger kids still presumably mastering the fundamentals. "We are not letting a student's keyboarding skills get in the way of being able to judge their writing ability," says the state's education chief. Despite some guff from skeptical lawmakers who think it will discourage poor spellers from getting better, educators say it's the wave of the future. "We're giving one additional tool to students to identify potential misspellings," says another state education official. "It's consistent with how we might expect kids to learn how to use the technology in life."