Maryland has elected to forge ahead with PARCC assessments and will be utilizing them next year for all applicable high school students. In December, Maryland’s Superintendent Lowery agreed that Maryland will become the “fiscal agent on behalf of all the PARCC states” after Florida was “relieved of its role.”
The Maryland State Board of Education announced in the minutes from their January 28th meeting that the PARCC assessments will replace the HSAs in Mathematics and English/Language Arts beginning next year:
“Superintendent’s report focused on assessment. I will attach to these minutes IMPORTANT GRAPHICS related to transition from H S A requirements in English 10 and Algebra to PARCC. In general, next year, PARCC tests will replace these two H S A exams and new bridge validations will be developed. Biology and Govt will continue as is. A key issue: what will the cut scores be for the replacement H S A tests???? Ultimately, the board will make this decision in the future with a recommendation from Dr. Lowery. Dr. Lowery indicated that the cut score for graduation purposes COULD be different from the score for career and college readiness set by PARCC. Stay tuned.”
Note that retesting with PARCC tests will NOT be as frequent as we have had regarding H S A in Maryland. It is unclear whether or not students will have to fail the test twice before starting bridge plans. Stay tuned on this as well.
The expectation is that PARCC will now be required for our current freshmen’s ELA and Mathematics graduation requirements though cut scores have yet to be set. On the PARCC website, there is a sample passage and PowerPoint with six sample items per grade level though no full-length sample tests yet exist. There are now also computer-based sample test items with two passages or “sections” and related questions for elementary, middle, and high school students though these are not yet individualized by grade level. While draft rubrics are also currently available for writing, sample prompts and writing samples have yet to be provided. There is a list or “white page” of potential writing forms that range from “adventure stories” and “science articles” in elementary school to “anecdotes” and “complaints” in middle school to “satires” and “testimonials” in high school.
In regard to Adams’ PAI
posting about SB 740 , the PARCC Algebra I Exam and the PARCC English 10 Exam will now be graduation requirements for Maryland students while the PARCC Algebra II Exam and the PARCC English 11 Exam will be utilized to determine college-readiness, similarly to the current role of the Accuplacer and the desired 550 on the critical reading and math sections of the SAT. The role of PARCC’s Geometry Exam is unknown.
The PARCC Field Test will be administered this spring in selected classrooms to “over one million students across PARCC states.”