Last week I invited the State Assessment Review Committee (SARC) to join my Education Advisory Committee (EAC) in my district office to hear feedback from our district concerning the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, also known as PARCC. The Education Advisory Committee acts as an informational committee for me, providing insight to current issues in education as I seek to make knowledgeable decisions in Springfield.
PARCC is the newest state assessment and measurer of accountability that public school districts in Illinois began administering in the 2014-2015 school year. The PARCC exam replaces the former ISAT and PSAE state assessments. Unlike our old tests, PARCC was developed through a consortium effort of states as a way to assess the college and career readiness status of students, as well as a way to identify the academic progression of students. This year, eight states (Illinois, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Colorado, and Louisiana) and the District of Columbia administered PARCC as their state assessment in full or in partial administration. The assessment is aligned to the new Illinois Learning Standards (ILS), and is based on Common Core standards. It is also designed to be delivered online, though about 15% of districts in Illinois are still using a paper/pencil version of the test.
Two years ago, I voted for SB 3412, which created SARC. The idea was to have a committee that would oversee state assessments and make recommendations to ISBE concerning such assessments and to provide accountability.
The legislation can be found here:
As one component of SARC’s work, they are conducting a statewide listening tour to garner feedback from the public regarding their experiences with the administration of PARCC, thus far. My Education Advisory Committee had the opportunity to share their thoughts and concerns with SARCC and you have the opportunity, as well. Your input will help to develop the finalized report that SARC will be delivering to ISBE in August.
If you have any thoughts concerning the PARCC assessment (i.e. testing experiences; content rigor; improvement of state support; etc.) this is a great opportunity to express them. Students, parents, teachers and administrators who are interested and wish to voice their opinions or concerns can do so via an online survey. Please take a few minutes to complete SARC’s anonymous survey below according to your status as a student, parent, teacher or administrator. All surveys submitted by August 12, 2016 will also be included in the report to ISBE.
o Students: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/B5LHMMR
o Parents: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/H2GYWVX
o Teachers: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/BJYKK7K
o Administrators: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/W9LQFLC
o Parents in Spanish: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/M8FRW5X
ISBE will be holding additional PARCC listening tour events in September. 2016. Click on the link below for more information:
(*The information gathered at the hearings in September will not be included in the official report to ISBE which is due on August 12, 2016.)