The stakes are low, says the Illinois State Board of Education, for this first run of PARCC. That's the test which replaces ISAT as the state's standardized test for third-graders and up. The two-part test is given in March and May. The test is touted as emphasizing writing and analytical skills over the ability to fill in a bubble.
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“Parents, teachers – everyone wants to get it right. We want to provide a test that is more meaningful, that gives us better information,” says ISBE spokeswoman Mary Fergus. “PARCC aims to be more meaningful, to assess what matters in today's world.”
Fergus says there have been test runs of PARCC, and PARCC Primers have been provided to local districts.