After talking to many parents around town, it seems that there is some confusion and concern regarding new testing and the effects it may have on future graduates. As an organizer of Save Our Schools, a grassroots organization that follows state education issues that affect public school students, I thought I would share this pertinent information in an effort to provide some clarity to those who may be concerned. 

Are you aware that your child is not required to take the PARCC test to graduate high school? He or she is, however, required to demonstrate proficiencies.

The New Jersey State Board of Education recently updated their list of assessments and their various score points that members of the classes of 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 can use to demonstrate that they have met the competency testing requirements needed for a regular high school diploma. (Special education students, whose Individualized Education Plans [IEPs] specify an alternative way to demonstrate proficiencies, will continue to follow the graduation requirements set forth in their IEPs.).

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Detailed information indicating the options available to the graduating classes of 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 can be found at this link:  http://education.state.nj.us/broadcasts/2015/NOV/05/14263/Updated%20Grad%20Requirements%20with%20PARCC%20threshold%20scores.pdf

Test Options for English Language Arts and Math are: 

-PARCC ELA Grade 9/Alg 1 >= 750 (Level 4)  or

-PARCC ELA Grade 10 /Alg II>=750 (Level 4) or

-PARCC ELA Grade 11/Geometry >= 725 (Level 3) or

-SAT Reading/MA* >= 400 or

-ACT Reading /MAor ACT PLAN Reading/MA >= 16 or

-Accuplacer Write Placer >= 6/ Accuplacer Elementary Algebra >= 76 or

-PSAT10 Reading/MA or PSAT-NMSQT Reading/MA** >=40 or

-ACT Aspire Reading/MA >= 422 or

-ASVAB-AFQT Composite ELA/MA>=31 or

-Meet the Criteria of the NJDOE Portfolio Appeal 

Note: * SAT taken prior to March 2016; ** PSAT taken prior to October 2015. The College Board will establish new ‘cut scores’ in December 2015 for the new PSAT and in May 2016 for the new SAT.