How do you decide?

Confused PARCC

It’s time for the End of Year (EOY) PARCC Exam. It is just around the corner with just weeks or in some cases just a few days left. With so much of news, some facts and some fake, coupled with an information overload from all corners of the education field, it is more noise than voice.

At Accel Learning, we would like to help clear some of this noise and help you get a voice of reason around PARCC.

Here are some of the frequently asked questions around PARCC:

1. Will the PARCC in the Spring of 2015 count?

On Feb 12, 2015, the Assembly Education Committee of the State of New Jersey passed the Bill (A4190) stating that “Performance on the new state test for New Jersey students in grades 3-11 would not be used to evaluate students or their teachers”. The Bill would cover the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) a period of three years beginning with the 2015-16 school year. The bill would not allow the tests to be used in the evaluation of teachers or to determine student placement, promotion or graduation.

So, the short answer is, performance in PARCC will not be counted from Academic years 2015-16 to 2018-19

2. Should my child take the PARCC?

This is really a matter of choice. But if you would like our recommendation, it would be – Yes, they should still take the PARCC. You may ask why…? Here are a few reasons why…

  1. New Jersey does not have an opt-out provision – this means, that they can skip the PARCC, but will not have any substitute test to take. This means that your child may not get evaluated. So, how would you know if they are ready for the next grade?
  2. Tests encourage studying. Think about it, if a child knows that they would never have to answer any question, why would they study? It is human inertia, not to put effort. With a Test coming up, they will have to put in some sincere time studying… and studying is why they go to school… isn’t it?
  3. You may avoid it now, but not for ever. Competition is everywhere… from the natural world to the corporate world. Tests create a sense of competition. This helps prepare the child for the real world. Wouldn’t you want your child to be prepared to take on the world…? Well this is the first step.

3. What happens if my child opts out of the PARCC?

Nothing much. They just lose an opportunity to get themselves tested.

  •  You school does not lose funding
  •  Your child does not lose any points for graduation
  •  Your child’s teacher does not get impacted

But then, why would you like to lose this opportunity?

Have more questions? Contact us and we will be happy to guide you.