Education

Bill to Inform Public about Number of Students Taking PARCC Test Approved by NJ Assembly

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Assemblywoman Angela McKnight (D-Hudson) Credits: New Jersey Democrats
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Assemblywoman Mila Jasey (D-Essex/Morris) Credits: New Jersey Democrats
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TRENTON, NJ – Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Mila Jasey and Angela McKnight to require school districts and the state Department of Education to post PARCC student participation rates on their websites was approved Thursday by the Assembly. 
            “The debate over the PARCC test has been a contentious one, and partly fueled by what many parents felt was a lack of clear information about its implementation,” said Jasey (D-Essex/Morris). “Posting participation rates on multiple websites will ensure that any member of the public who wants to know this information will be able to get it without jumping through hoops.”

“It is understandable why so many parents were concerned about having their children take the PARCC test, since often times they got conflicting information or no information at all when they asked questions,” said McKnight (D-Hudson). “Making this information easily accessible to the public by posting it online can help regain some of the public trust that was lost early in the process.”

The bill (A-2567) would require school districts and the Department of Education (DOE) to post information on their websites regarding student participation in the assessments developed by the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC assessments).

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Under the bill, a school district must provide on its website, and make publicly available upon request, information regarding the number of students in each grade level who participated in the administration of a PARCC test and the number of students who did not participate in the test.

The information must include the subject area of the PARCC assessment, the grade levels covered by the assessment, and the dates on which the assessment was administered. A school district must provide the required information on its website, and provide the information to the DOE, no later than ten days after the district completes its administration of any PARCC assessment to any grade level.

In addition, the bill would require the DOE to post on its website data regarding the total number of students in each grade level statewide who participated in the administration of a PARCC assessment, and the total number of students in each grade level statewide who did not participate in the administration of a PARCC assessment. The information would have to include the subject area of the PARCC assessment, the grade levels covered by the assessment, and the dates of the testing window in which the assessment was administered. Under the bill, the department must post the information within a reasonable time after receiving the participation data from all school districts.

            The bill was approved 70-2-2 by the Assembly and now awaits further consideration by the Senate.

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