The student news publication of Libertyville High School

Drops of Ink

The student news publication of Libertyville High School

Drops of Ink

The student news publication of Libertyville High School

Drops of Ink

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PARCC Test to be Implemented Next Year

PARCC Test to be Implemented Next Year
www.parcconline.org

A new common assessment may be implemented in Illinois for grades 3-11.

The test, known as the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers or PARCC, is a test that measures a student’s readiness for college, and also measures their percentile within the state for multiple subjects.  This test will not replace the ACT or SAT as a college acceptance exam.

According to LHS college/career counselor Amy Belstra, the state of Illinois has not yet decided on the PARCC test.  They are most likely going to implement next year, however.

The PARCC test is very different from the SAT and ACT.  It is a course-based test, which means, for example, that if you are in Algebra II, then you will take the specific test for Algebra II.  Another difference between the tests is that the ACT and SAT are what colleges use to determine whether or not a student is accepted into a school.  The PARCC test will be used if a student has already been accepted, but needs to determine a course level.

Mr. Ray Albin, Libertyville’s assistant principal, is in charge of coordinating standardized tests, and he is very informed about the upcoming changes in the system.

“If an incoming college student thinks he is ready to take calculus II as a freshman, but the college isn’t sure, they will look at the student’s test grades on the PARCC.  If he did not score high enough, then the college will tell him he needs to take Calculus I first,” Mr. Albin explained.  “The PARCC will determine which courses a college student can enroll in.”

Another major difference between the PARCC test and the ACT and SAT is that students of many grades will take it.  The ACT and SAT are only taken by juniors (or sometimes sophomores and seniors), but the PARCC test will be taken by freshmen, sophomores, and juniors in high school.  It will also be taken by students in grades 3-8 in elementary and middle schools.  The PARCC test will replace the ISAT (Illinois Standard Achievement Test) as the common assessment for students in elementary and middle school.  For high school students, it will replace the PSAE.

The PARCC will be taken two times per year, for each English and mathematics subjects a student is learning.  It will be taken the first time in March or April, and the second time will be at the end of the year in May.  Taking the test at these times will track a student’s improvement throughout a course.

Certain students have been selected to take the PARCC test early to help judge its effectiveness.  The test will last for around 3 hours, and the students will have to miss certain periods in the school day.  One of the students taking the test is freshman Ben Land.

“It is a little inconvenient to miss our classes,” Ben explained, “but we have to do it to make sure the test is good enough.”

Unlike certain parts of the SAT and ACT, the PARCC test will not focus on grammar as much as actually applying the students’ knowledge on a subject.  According to Mr. Albin, the PARCC test will include many questions requiring the student to read a short passage and then answer questions based off the reading.  This will cause the students to apply their knowledge, instead of just regurgitating facts.

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PARCC Test to be Implemented Next Year