Letters to the Editor

Why All Parents Should Consider Refusing the PARCC—2017 Edition


Hi. My name is Jen Grana – I live in Sparta township and have 3 boys – 2 of which are in the public education system now – a middle schooler, a Kindergartner and a sweet oblivious 2 year old who will be there before I know it I am sure. We spend a lot of time talking about and thinking about public education in our house because we will be knee-deep in it for the next 20 years or so and every spring we end up discussing the same thing – refusing the PARCC test and what that means.

Like all parents, I want my children to work hard in school. I want the teachers to use their talent and their education to help them grow into passionate learners and creative thinkers. I want my all of my children to make their way through elementary and middle school, successfully transitioning from grade to grade with their teachers support, passing tests all the while. Then, through high school. Then, with hope, they will go to college or technical school and find a job that they LOVE. I didn’t set out to raise them to be working representatives of what the U.S. can learn faster or do better than other countries. I’m raising them to be decent human beings that can be proud of themselves and their accomplishments. To do that they need their teachers.

The PARCC test has proven far too costly. It costs students who don’t perform up to state standards hours of preparation time to get a better score the following year. Sometimes, it will cost them an extra work period or an elective period as a result – throwing the rest of their grades they work all year long towards to the wind. The PARCC test costs kids with special needs FAR too much stress to sit through a test that the result means nothing for. It costs teachers valuable instruction time. The PARCC tests costs the students and teachers time that could be spent on literature, creative writing and the flexibility to experiment with new teaching techniques. The PARCC tests cost teachers the ability to teach WHAT they want their kids to know and understand and HOW they want them to learn it.

Sign Up for E-News

Last year, hundreds of parents came from ALL over New Jersey to the NJ Department of Education in Trenton. They took days off of work; they spent valuable time preparing public testimonies. They drove to Trenton from all corners of the state to tell the NJ BOE face to face that they do NOT believe the PARCC should be considered for a graduation requirement in NJ. Parents, teachers, lawyers, doctors – showed up to express how troubling it was to them that the PARCC test was even being considered as such. Not ONE person showed up to support this resolution… and the BOE passed it anyway. Refusing to participate in this test is the only way to directly and effectively show the state that you think it is time that they listen. Teachers and administrators cannot speak up… but parents can and this is how. The state wants your student’s data and they want their participation but you do NOT have to give it to them.

I am not writing to tell every parent to sit down and write a refusal letter. I am just writing to say you that you can. I am writing to say–please read about it, research the many reasons why thousands of parents are around our area and why that same many numbers of teachers and administrators around the state are quietly hoping that you do.

One thing I realized during my journey of learning more about this is that it’s not just about my child, it’s about all of the children in NJ. There is a lot going on in education – in our country and in our state. The “test and punish” culture that has been established and promoted in our state is not working, has the potential to get worse and cannot and should not continue.

If you find that you disagree with all that is happening, surrounding the PARCC test and standardized testing, now would be the time to make your voice heard and refusing is the best way to do that.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of or anyone who works for is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer. Click here to submit a Letter to the Editor.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Possible Snow Overnight Monday in Randolph, Again

March 12, 2018

RANDOLPH, NJ- A  winter weather advisory remains in effect from 8:00 pm this evening until 10:00 am Tuesday according the the National Weather Service.

There is a coastal storm that will be in the area Monday evening and into the Tuesday morning commute. The current forecast data suggests that  the area may experience rain before a changeover to all ...

County College of Morris Performing Arts and Cultural Events Spring 2018 Season

March 16, 2018

APRIL 2018:

Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Wednesday through Saturday, April 11-14
7:30 p.m., Saturday matinee 2 p.m. Student Community Center Dragonetti Auditorium

The Broadway Theatre is crumbling and closing! To pay homage, past performers of the “Weismann Follies” have gathered there for a reunion and final goodbye to the historic landmark. Journey through ...

Morristown Happenings: Things to do in Morristown this Weekend

March 10, 2018

MORRISTOWN, NJ -  It's been a rough week for residents due to power outages and storm related damages. Maybe a little distraction? Morristown has parades, dances, farmers markets, crafts, and much more this weekend.  


Friday March 9

Celebrate Dr. Seuss (rescheduled from 3/9); Morris County Library; Celebrity Readers from 3:30pm - 4:45pm

Morristown High ...

Randolph Police Blotter Includes Active Warrants in February

March 14, 2018

On January 31, 2018, Nicholas, Bernardo, age 19 of Rockaway, NJ was arrested during a motor vehicle stop by P.O. Greco on active warrants issued out of the Township of Randolph and the Boro of Rockaway. Mr. Bernardo was transported to the Randolph Police Department and processed. Mr. Bernardo was committed to the Morris County Correctional Facility in default of $1,300 bail.

On February 1, ...

Floating Classroom Will Help Roxbury Kids Embrace 'Their' Lake Hopatcong

March 14, 2018

ROXBURY, NJ – There are plenty of kids living in Roxbury who’ve never been on Lake Hopatcong, says lake buff Marty Kane. He’s even confident many don’t realize their town borders the big lake.

That’s one of the reasons Kane, chairman of the Lake Hopatcong Foundation Board of Trustees, is bubbling with excitement about the upcoming launch of the ...

Upcoming Events


Sun, March 18, 2:00 PM

Randolph Township Free Public Library, Randolph

Hank Shapiro on Piano

Community Calendar


Tue, March 20, 4:30 PM

Randolph Township Free Public Library, Randolph

Explorer's Club

Arts & Entertainment Community Calendar Education Health & Wellness Other

Randolph Speech and Debate Team Attend Harvard Invitational

March 15, 2018

RANDOLPH, NJ- The Randolph Speech and Debate team drove up to Harvard to compete at the 44th Annual Harvard National Forensics Tournament on February 16-19. Bringing in its largest group of students in years, – around forty competitors – the team was quite successful. 

The Harvard invitational is the largest forensics tournaments of the season, bringing in hundreds of teams ...

Randolph Recreation Wrestlers Shine at NJ Kids State Championships

March 15, 2018

RANDOLPH, NJ- 9 Randolph Rec Wrestlers qualified for the NJ Kid’s Wrestling Championship Wrestling Tournament this weekend.

With 12 Wrestling Mats and 1000+ Wrestlers, this 2 day event in Trenton is considered one of the toughest in the country.

"The results below are monumental for any program or club and are a testament to ...

Atlantic Health System’s Dr. Linda Gillam Recognized with American College of Cardiology’s Top Honor

March 17, 2018

MORRISTOWN, NJ - The American College of Cardiology (ACC) has recognized Linda D. Gillam, MD, MPH, FACC, the Dorothy and Lloyd Huck Chair of Cardiovascular Medicine at Morristown Medical Center/Atlantic Health System, with the 2018 Gifted Educator Award.

The Gifted Educator Award is presented to a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology who has demonstrated innovative, outstanding ...

Health Alert: Child with Measles Traveled to Newark Airport on March 12

TRENTON, NJ — If you were at Newark Liberty International Airport on Monday, March 12 between 12:45 and 9 p.m., you may have been exposed to measles and should contact your health care provider.

The N.J. Department of Health has issued a public health alert after a child with a confirmed case of measles — a highly contagious disease — arrived in Terminal B at Newark Liberty ...

Randolph Lions Club Collecting New / Used Golf Clubs and Balls

The Randolph Lions club is collecting new or used golf clubs and balls to support Bunkers in Bagdhdad.

Drop off is from March 1 through April 14  at the Randolph Community Center 30 Calais Road Randolph N.J. Center is open M-F 8:30 to 4:30

Donations will be sent to our brave service men and women currently serving in combat zones. Equipment is also supplied to Wounded ...

Morris Museum Exhibits Student Art from The Peck School

MORRISTOWN, NJ  – Throughout the month of March, the Morris Museum, in its North Gallery, will be highlighting a range of student work showcasing the arts program at The Peck School in Morristown. The exhibit, entitled “Step into Spring: Budding Artists of The Peck School,” includes painting, sculpture and woodworking from students in Peck’s K to 8 program.

The Teachers and Support Staff  of Randolph Township Schools Ask For Support

Each day the teachers and support staff of Randolph School District work hard to help our students succeed at their highest level.  On any given day all one has to do is view the Randolph Education Association’s (REA) social media sites to see and read about the tremendous accomplishments our students and your children are making.  These media posts are just a small fraction of ...


AtlantiCast: Episode 13

On this episode of AtlantiCast, new clinical studies in the fields of cardiology and immunotherapy, national and statewide recognitions for Atlantic Health System medical centers and the inaugural AtlantiCast Collab Challenge!