Every two years the Legislature begins the process of considering legislation for the new session. Over 5000 bills have been filed and legislators have until Monday, February 2 to cosponsor these bills. Here is an update on new legislation that has been proposed regarding the Common Core Standards and PARCC testing. Please contact your local legislators and encourage them to consider supporting the following bills.
1.HD 3311 An Act Relative to Pausing PARCC ~ Rep Keiko Orrall (R)
Current Co-sponsors, Kim Ferguson, Susan Williams Gifford, Tim Whalen, Colleen Garry, Michael Moore, James Dwyer, Steven Howitt, Susannah Whipps Lee, Shawn Dooley
Summary: Pauses the implementation of the Partnership for Assessment for Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) test until the department of elementary and secondary education provides an assessment of the costs including but not limited to the department, the costs to the board of elementary and secondary education, and the costs to each individual school district in the commonwealth to develop and implement the PARCC; professional development associated with PARCC; and any equipment, hardware, software, or technology upgrades needed for compliance with PARCC; and any additional costs associated with data mapping of students in the commonwealth, as well as the administrative costs required to collect, maintain and protect the confidentiality of such data collection.
2.HD2040 An Act Relative to IT Upgrade Reimbursements for PARCC Compliance ~ Rep Keiko Orrall (R)
Current Co-sponsors: Kim Ferguson, Susan Williams Gifford, Tim Whalen, Colleen Garry, Michael Moore, James Dwyer, James Eldridge, Steven Howitt, Leonard Mirra, Shawn Dooley
Summary: Reimburses all schools for expenditures incurred during the previous fiscal year for upgrading informational technology hardware, software and training for compliance with the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) assessment.
3.HD1990 An Act relative to the Common Core Opt Out for School Districts
~ Rep Paul Frost (R) & Rep Keiko Orrall (R)
Summary: This bill prevents the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education from mandating that any school district in the Commonwealth follow the curriculum standards offered by Common Core State Standards. This bill also allows school districts to exempt themselves from the standardized exam known as the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC).
4.HD2404 An act relative to a PARCC Workgroup ~ Rep Brad Jones (R)
Current Co-Sponsors Keiko M. Orrall, Elizabeth A. Poirier, Sheila Harrington
Summary: This legislation would create a working group to study the rigor of the Common Core State Standards and the accompanying PARCC tests. Maryland has enacted a similar working group to look at its state standards.
5.HD1471 An Act relative to a moratorium on high stakes testing and PARCC ~ Rep Marjorie Decker (D) MTA Sponsored
Current Co-Sponsors Keiko M. Orrall, Kathleen O’Connor Ives, James J. Dwyer, Denise Provost, Elizabeth A. Poirier, Angelo J. Puppolo, Jr., Joseph McKenna, Colleen Garry, Josh Cutler, James Eldridge, Paul Mark, Aaron Vega, Mary Keefe
Summary: This bill places a 3-year moratorium on PARCC and the use of high-stakes testing for 10th grade graduation, teacher evaluation, and school labeling. While MCAS may continue to be administered, it calls for a break in using MCAS as a graduation requirement, while a broad-based commission of stakeholders study the impact.
6.HD2564 An Act relative to parental opt-out of PARCC ~ Rep Donald Berthiaume (R)
Summary: Parents or guardians of students enrolled in Massachusetts public schools shall be afforded the authority to exempt their children from the standardized exam known as the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) without penalty.
7.HD 772 An Act relative to education standards ~ Rep Todd Smola (R)
Summary: Nullifies the 2010 vote of the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education adopting national education standards; i.e. the Common Core standards in English language arts and mathematics. In addition, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education shall conduct an examination of academic standards and then update and revise the existing frameworks and MCAS assessment. As part of the examination process, the governor shall appoint a special commission to be chaired by the lieutenant governor and whose members will consist of educators, teachers, administrators, school committee members, parents of students, and concerned citizens. That commission shall provide input and assist DESE in developing new standards that shall be submitted to the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education for final approval and adoption.
Thank you again for your efforts on this issue. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.