by BRIANNA SICILIANO Photo/Video Editor
The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, also known as the PARCC, will replace the HSPA graduation requirement, as well as the NJASK that students are required to take throughout elementary and middle school starting next year.
In the past, all New Jersey High School juniors were required to take the HSPAs. If a student passed the exam, he or she student was able to graduate. If not, the student would have to retake–and pass–the exam on the next available date.
It is now time to kiss the HSPAs goodbye and prepare our students for their next major battle: PARCC.
Unlike previous state testing, the PARCC exam will be administered through the computer. The exam will measure whether students are on track to be successful in college and future careers.
The high quality assessment––which is used throughout 18 states, not counting the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands–– tests K-12 knowledge in Mathematics and English/Language Arts Literacy. The exam will give teachers, schools, students, and parents better information on whether or not students are on track in their learning, as well as their hopes for success after high school. Likewise, the exam will work as a tool to help teachers customize learning to meet student needs.
PARCC is based on the core belief that the test should work as a tool to improve teaching and learning. Because the assessments are aligned with the new, more rigorous Common Core State Standards (CCSS), the exams and the results will ensure that every child is on a path to college and career readiness by measuring what students should know at each grade level.
“PARCCs will replace the NJASK as well as the HSPAs, which I hope will help younger students. My sister is in the middle school and she has a hard time with reading and comprehension, so I hope that new exam will help teachers recognize her, and other students’, weaknesses,” said an anonymous sophomore.
According to PARCC, the new assessments, which will be ready for New Jersey administration during the 2014-15 school year, will help establish a path toward college and desired careers by the end of high school, provide information regarding students’ progress toward this goal from third grade and up, and give teachers with information that will allow them to provide support to students.
Students will complete all PARCC assessments on computers or tablets, not with paper and pencil.
“I am extremely happy that the exam does not force students to use those long, annoying scantrons. I hope that the test does help with college and career readiness, and that this test is not useless,” said sophomore Toni Rothchild.
The PARCC performance-based assessments (PBA) and end-of-year (EOY) assessments will be administered in a total of nine sessions. At each grade level, the PBA component will require five sessions, which includes three sessions for ELA/literacy and two sessions for mathematics.
The EOY component at each grade level will require four sessions – two for ELA/literacy and two for mathematics. For example, ninth and tenth graders will have 9 hours and 45 minutes of testing, while eleventh graders will have 9 hours and 55 minutes of testing.
What do you think about the PARCC test? Are you excited for the new exam and its advancements?