Score reports will be delivered to school districts much sooner in 2016 – by end of summer. Local school districts will determine when and how to deliver score reports to parents.
The PARCC assessments measure whether students are meeting new and higher academic standards and mastering the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in college and the workforce – complex skills like critical-thinking, persuasive writing, and problem-solving. Lower test scores do not mean students are learning less; it means the tests have changed and are asking students to meet a higher bar.
As teachers spend more time focusing on the content outlined in the new standards, and students gain more practice with the skills, scores are expected to improve. Several states have been using tests aligned to higher standards for a few years now, and student achievement has grown considerably.
Teachers and schools use many tools to see how well students are progressing academically, and this test is just one of those tools. Your child’s score should be used as one measure to help teachers focus instruction on what support your child needs to stay or get on track. By evaluating students against the new standards from the third grade forward, teachers can step in early to help a child develop the knowledge and skills needed to be more confident and comfortable with the material they are learning.
If you have questions about your child’s scores, first talk to his or her teacher(s) or a school administrator. The PARCC test results can serve as a guide in a discussion about additional support or challenges your child may need in class, as well as other ways to support your child at home. For more information specific to your state, including how you can reach your state’s Department of Education, visit your state page on our site by clicking on Your State at the top menu. You can also learn more on the PARCC website.
The score report breaks down each subject into different subsets of skills so parents and teachers can identify where a child excels in English language arts/literacy and mathematics, or where he or she needs extra support or practice. PARCC provides the same information to teachers and parents.
Parents can use this information to understand their child’s needs and strengths and work with their schools to identify resources to support their child’s education. Teachers and schools can use this information to better plan instruction, support and enrichment for students in the coming year and to strengthen their instructional programs for all students.
There are many online resources that provide information about the standards for each grade, tools to enhance your child’s learning in these areas, and examples of the types of work that meet standards. We have collected some of the best resources for you, and they are featured on the Help Your Child page.
PARCC tests mirror the work students are doing every day in classrooms, so students do not need to “cram” or study for this test. Because test questions reflect what they are learning and doing in the classroom every day, the best preparation and practice is through the classwork and homework they complete throughout the year. Practice tests, featuring actual test questions and examples of all levels of student work, are available on the PARCC Partnership Resource Center.
Families of students in grades 3-8 can take advantage of the GreatKids Test Guide for Parents to better understand what their child was tested on and how to support their child’s learning, grade-by-grade and subject-by-subject. To get started, grab your score report and choose your state and the grade your child was in last year. Also available en Espanol.