New state law causes PARCC changes for Juniors

English III assessment canceled for spring semester causing mixed feelings

PARCC, short for the Partnership of Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, is a standardized test given to students up until their completion of Algebra 2 and English III. 
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Creative commons photo courtesy of PARCC

PARCC, short for the Partnership of Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, is a standardized test given to students up until their completion of Algebra 2 and English III. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Isabella Ji and Ella Lukowiak

Juniors in English III this semester lucked out when discovered they would not be taking the corresponding PARCC exam this year, unlike their peers who took the course in the fall.

PARCC, short for the Partnership of Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, is a standardized test given to students up until their completion of Algebra 2 and English III. According to USA Today Network, this test is only used in a few states in the United States. PARCC is then used to track student progress and determine school rankings. While CHS students in the past had typically taken the English PARCC through their junior year, the state department of education excused students taking English III in second semester from testing this year.

“All we know is that it came down from the state department of education and we were told that the 11th graders were no longer going to be tested,” said CHS guidance counselor Melanie Sambataro.

Since the change did not go into effect until second semester, juniors who took English III in the fall still had to take the test.

Junior Mary Eknoian from Wall, who took English in second semester, was relieved about not having to take the test, but sympathetic towards first semester classes.

“I’m happy about it because obviously, no one likes to take a three hour test,” Eknoian said. “But if I was in first semester and had to take it [PARCC] and second semester didn’t, I would be a little annoyed.” 

Junior Jill Fukushima of Eatontown saw the situation as irritating and unfair.

“We had to sit there for hours and take the stupid standardized test that nobody really cares about, and all of my friends don’t, and it’s really annoying,” Fukushima said.

Regardless of whether they took the standardized test or not, students agree that the PARCC is not beneficial and doesn’t show their true understanding of material learned.

Junior Alessia Lubrano of Colts Neck who did not take the English III PARCC this year claims that she does not think PARCC helps students. 

“It doesn’t really benefit students in any way besides the schools ranking,” said Lubrano. 

English III teacher Kelly Lang empathizes with the students, understanding their opinions towards the test. 

“Generally, I don’t think they care for it too much, but I think they realize that it’s a necessary hoop that they have to jump through,” Lang said.

Students as well as teachers were not informed of why this year’s English III PARCC was cancelled. 

According to North Jersey News, the New Jersey Senate recently passed a graduation testing bill that eliminates the requirement for students to take the PARCC standardized test on reading comprehension and writing skills in the 11th grade. 

Despite the changes, Lang feels confident in her students’ ability to succeed in any testing.

“I absolutely think our students are prepared for any standardized test that they take,” Lang said. 

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