RE: PARCC Test Student Participation
Please reconsider your decision to refuse your child’s participation on the PARCC test. Please consider the following points:
1. Roughly 90 percent of our student population has been participating in the test. Both students and staff have reported it is going smoothly especially since it is the first time we have done this on a technology platform. Students also report that the tests are less intense than they expected.
2. When students take tests, this gives us important information to help adjust our curriculum and better meet individual needs. The test will give us more detailed information than the HSPA and NJASK allowing us to target specific areas to improve student learning. Much has been said about the quality of education; this is an opportunity for us to improve.
3. Presently, all students in the class of 2016, 2017, and 2018 can use their performance on the PARCC to meet testing requirements for graduation. Students who do not take the PARCC test will be required to meet cut scores on the SAT, ACT, Accuplacer, PSAT or ASVAB. I am concerned that the PARCC test may actually be the easiest cut score for students to achieve. Additionally, the majority of the alternative assessments listed require fees and scheduling outside the normal school day. If students do not make the PARCC cut score, they may also be able to meet the criteria of the NJDOE Portfolio Appeal. This safety net does not exist unless students take the PARCC test.
4. There are a range of consequences if our schools do not meet the 95% testing participation requirement. These include possible loss of federal funding and consequently could result in program cuts. Conditions placed on the district for non-compliance could also result in re-directing time, energy and resources away from student learning needs.
Our PARCC testing make-up window begins Monday, March 23rd. Please consider contacting your Building Principal to rescind your refusal no later than Friday, March 20, 2015.