Here's how you can help Park the PARCC:
Sign this petition and share with your contacts.
Write a letter to to your legislator. Sample letter attached below.
Call your legislators and set up a meeting. See the sample script below:
Sample script: Phone calls requesting meetings: "Hi, my name is X and I'm a constituent of Rep/Sen Y. I have __ kids in CPS and. I have serious concerns about the new state test the PARCC. Community organizations and school districts in Illinois are calling for a delay in giving the PARCC. I would like to set up a meeting with Rep/Sen. Y to discuss my concerns. I also have some other parents from the district who would like to attend."
For phone calls without meeting requests: "I'd like Rep/Sen X to push the IL State Board of Education to request a waiver from the US Dept of Education on the new PARCC test that is supposed to be given this spring.
The PARCC isn't ready for our children, and our schools aren't ready with the technology and or the new curriculum and standards that are required for this test. The test is too long, too expensive and hasn't been shown to be valid and reliable.
We also want Sen/Rep X to support an opt-out bill and we have language ready in the house for a bill. I can send Rep/Sen X more information on both these issues."
For opt-out resources see www.morethanascorechicago.org
RYH's Position Paper on PARCC
PARK the PARCC -- Illinois Must Request a Federal Waiver for 2014-15
Raise Your Hand is joining school districts around Illinois in urging the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to request a waiver from the US Department of Education (DOE) to suspend the 2014-15 PARCC exam. This test is not yet ready for statewide, mandatory administration. There is national concern over quality and reliability of this test due to inadequate time for field testing, and there is inadequate technological and Common Core readiness across the state.
Only 11 states plus DC are using PARCC this year, out of the 23 states originally planning to use it and only 8 states plus DC will use both elementary and high school PARCC tests.
Raise Your Hand’s Recommendations:
- Delay the PARCC until the test is improved and validated through additional field testing
- Continue the use of other nationally normed reading/math tests in 2014-15, such as MAP/ACT
- Move ACT high school testing back to its original date in April (currently early March)
IL schools and students are not ready for the PARCC and the PARCC is not ready for IL
- Common Core standards not yet fully implemented in many schools
- Incomplete and inadequate accommodations for ELL and IEP students
- Test needs further revision before widespread use
- Field testing finished in early June, but analysis of results has not been released
- Many schools ill-equipped with computers or Internet bandwidth needed to administer test
Extensive time spent on testing: Impact to learning environment
- 10 hours per grade level of testing in grades 3-8 (spread across two periods, March and May)
- 11 hours of testing across the two test windows for high school students
- Disrupted learning time due to changes in schedule, lack of available space, technology, staff
- Technology inadequacies likely to result in additional time lost
- Lost instructional time and testing fatigue
Issues unique to High Schools
- PARCC is not used for college admissions or scholarships
- PARCC pushes ACT earlier, potentially resulting in lower scores - jeopardizing scholarships and admissions
- PARCC will only test students in English III, Algebra II, and Integrated Math III.
- Doesn’t allow for cohort comparisons by year
- AP test dates fall within same window as planned PARCC administration
What Parents Can Do to Park the PARCC:
- Sign Raise Your Hand’s Petition at http://bit.ly/1rcYC7t
- Share this information with other parents
- Call or visit your legislators and share concerns listed here
- Ask your LSC to put PARCC on its agenda to make sure everyone understands its implications
- Attend a Raise Your Hand or More than a Score meeting to learn more (ilraiseyourhand.org)
- Join us at the Illinois State Board of Ed meeting on 11/21 in Chicago. Email us to get involved: firstname.lastname@example.org