A report in Chicago Sun Times on March 4, 2015 by Lauren Fitzpatrick discusses that the principals of two highly rated elementary schools, in the Chicago Public Schools are supporting the parents of their students’ decision to opt-out of the state’s upcoming standardized test based on Common Core Standards. The test which is called Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, PARCC for short, will not be used to evaluate teachers, rate schools or decide whether students are promoted or graduate.
The principal of Nettelhorst Elementary School, Cindy Wulbert told the parents who wish to opt their children out of the test write a letter to the School’s administration requesting to opt-out.
Troy LaRaviere , the out-spoken principal of Blaine Elementary School e-mailed his students’ parents as follows:
“I am writing to make it clear that the Blaine administration fully supports the PTA’s effort to maximize Blaine students’ instructional time. “Students whose parents opt them out will receive a full day of instruction. Teachers are developing plans that will provide enriched learning experiences for non-testing students during the testing window. I want to clearly state that whether you opt-out or not, Blaine’s administration and teachers will respect and support your wishes for your child.”
The Illinois State Board of Education, ISBE, plans to administer a very unpopular 10-hour standardized test, Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, PARCC, next spring in the midst of strong dissent from both parents and educators. On Friday November 21, 2014, 3700 signed petitions against PARCC were delivered by a parent group to the ISBE urging for at least a year’s delay of the test. The parents asked the Board of Education to request a waiver from the US Department of Education, but ISBE intends to administer the test partially out of fear of losing funding from the federal government according to state superintendent Christopher Koch. Joining the call for a year’s delay is Barbara Byrd-Bennett, the Chicago Public Schools CEO who requested the year’s delay for the PARCC implementation because the district is not ready to administer the exam.
In a strong show of solidarity, thousands of Colorado high school seniors from various schools and districts refused to take the state mandated tests in science and social studies administered on Thursday November 13, 2014. The high school seniors’ stance against taking the state mandated tests bolsters the rising anti-test movement not only in Colorado where both liberals and conservatives are united against over-testing, but also across the the United States.