What Will Replace Maryland School Assessments (MSAs)?
The PARCC assessment, part of the rigorous Common Core curriculum, is a series of computer-based tests for students in third grade through 11th grade.
Students will be tested for up to 10 hours under the new Partnership for Assessment of Readiness in College and Careers (PARCC) exams, which locally replaces the Maryland School Assessment (MSA).
In a layout of the PARCC Assessment released Wednesday, third-grade students would be tested for eight hours and 11th grade students for nearly 10 hours. Every grade level in between will also participate.
The computerized tests are part of the rigorous national Common Core State Standards curriculum. The performance-based component would run over five sessions—two for mathematics and three for English language arts/literacy, and the end of the year portion that would require four sessions—two for mathematics and two for English language arts/literacy.
The MSA tests for grades three to eight take approximately six hours over a four day span—two for mathematics and two for science. The high school assessments, which are subject-based, are taken after the completion of select courses and are approximately an hour long.
A full breakdown of each PARCC Assessment session time amount for every grade can be found online.
According to the report, schools would have a maximum of 20 days per component to administer the tests to all students, though individual students would have to take both components over a combined five to nine days.
The performance-based section would take place approximately 75 percent of the way into the school year, and the end of the year component about 90 percent of the way in, the report states.
Anne Arundel County Public Schools (AACPS) recently held information sessions about the Common Core State Standards, released in 2010 and an initiative heavily championed by President Barack Obama. According to an AACPS press release, Maryland and 43 states are working to implement the standards by the 2013-2014 school year.
Common Core was created to provide consistent educational standards throughout the country in English language arts and mathematics for kindergarten through 12th grades, according to the initiative's website.
Editor's note: This story was updated to reflect that MSA stands for Maryland School Assessment. Patch regrets the error.