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State Superintendent Announces Implementation of PARCC Assessment

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Contact: Victoria Holmes (202) 372-5415; [email protected] 

(Washington, DC) – State Superintendent of Education Jesús Aguirre announced today that the District of Columbia Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) will move forward with the implementation of the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) assessment in school year 2014-15. As a member of the PARCC consortium, the District of Columbia has been integral to the development of the PARCC assessment and was the second state in the nation to align its state assessment to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in reading and writing, and mathematics shortly thereafter. 
“A critical step in our ongoing work of elevating outcomes for our students is a move to a high quality next generation assessment that will precisely and fairly measure what students know and are able to do based on the Common Core State Standards,” said Aguirre. “We will make all formative and curriculum assessment resources produced by the PARCC consortium available to all public schools in the District that choose to administer them.”
Considerations for ensuring that the next generation assessment supports students in the District of Columbia include: 
  • Evidence based assessment design with questions of the highest quality; 
  • Aligned formative assessments that assist teachers in ensuring the same rigor of measurement throughout the school year and provide meaningful granular information; 
  • Tracking of academic growth to identify progress toward college and career readiness targets for every student; and 
  • The provision of useful information – including standard and strand level scores for each student’s results – that is anchored in a solid research base and allows for national comparability. 
The recent PARCC field test demonstrated that the contribution by educators in the District since 2010 to the development of this assessment has resulted in an extremely rigorous, high quality assessment aligned with the CCSS. The transition will provide an opportunity for Local Education Agencies (LEAs) to focus on the outcomes of students, the content used in the classroom to prepare students, and the ways in which assessments are made to support instructional quality.
Aguirre added, “As we transition to the implementation of PARCC, we will continue to reach out to the LEA community to discuss assessment options to meet our learners’ needs.”   
In 2010, the District of Columbia adopted the CCSS to raise achievement, clarify expectations, and ensure college and career readiness for all students. Soon after the adoption of the CCSS, OSSE joined the PARCC consortium for the development of a rigorous CCSS assessment tool. Both the adoption of new standards and participation in the assessment consortium created a new opportunity to focus on providing students with deeper learning and critical thinking opportunities aligned to college and career-ready curricula. 
For additional information related to this topic, please visit our website: osse.dc.gov.    
About the Office of the State Superintendent of Education 
The Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) is the State Education Agency for the District of Columbia charged with raising the quality of education for all DC residents. OSSE serves as the District’s liaison to the U.S. Department of Education and works closely with the District’s traditional and public charter schools. For more information about OSSE, visit our website: osse.dc.gov