Gov. Murphy keeps pledge to scale back testing

At its July 11 meeting, the New Jersey State Board of Education will have its first discussion of regulations to transition from the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) tests as part of New Jersey’s high school graduation requirements.  The proposed amendments, which are posted on the website of the State Board, would reduce required end-of-course assessments in English and Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics from six to two.

Under the proposal, students would only be required to take State ELA 10 and Algebra I assessments in high school, rather than the current six PARCC end-of-course high schools assessments in ELA 9, 10, and 11 and Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II.  The Department of Education will continue to allow students who do not receive a passing score on the State ELA 10 and Algebra I test to satisfy their graduation requirements through the alternative pathways that currently exist.

In addition to the changes specified in the proposal, the administration has announced that length of testing for all grades will be reduced by 25% and that the weight of the assessment on teacher evaluations will be lowered.  According to the proposal, the proposed regulations are an initial step in the transition of New Jersey’s statewide assessment system.  There will be another set of proposed regulations in the near future to implement the next phase of the assessment system once the full transition plan is presented.  More details and the text of the proposal are available here: