Debate Surrounding PARCC Assessment Continues In Massachusetts.The Worcester (MA) Telegram & Gazette (10/23, O'Connell) reported that Commissioner Mitchell Chester introduced the concept for a standardized test at last Monday’s board of education meeting which combines elements from both the previous MCAS assessment and the recently adopted PARCC, which is more closely aligned with the standards established by Common Core. However, despite the compromise, supporters of the PARCC have reportedly been steadfast in their support for the assessment, maintaining that PARCC represents a significant improvement over the previous exam and provides educators and employers with a better metric to measure students’ abilities. Opponents of the PARCC exam, however, voiced there concern that that assessment’s standards actually fell below those previously established by the state, and argued that, with the adoption of PARCC, Massachusetts could lose control over the standards of state education.
Maine Adopts SAT As 11th Grade Assessment Replacing Common Core’s Smarter Balanced Test.The Portland (ME) Press Herald (10/20) reports the Maine DOE announced they would use the SAT as their 11th grade assessment test, and use a New Hampshire company, Measured Progress Inc., to provide their third through eighth grade assessments. The SAT will replace the Smarter Balanced test, which was widely criticized for being difficult to administer and take.