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An introduction to the Louisiana PARCC Assessment

TUESDAY, JANUARY 19, 2016 11:17 AM

The Louisiana Department of Education requires students in 3rd through 8th grade to take Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers testing. High schoolers are also involved in these assessments via end-of-course tests in specific classes. Read on to learn more.

What is PARCC testing?
All Louisiana students in 3rd through 8th grade will take English language arts, science, social studies and mathematics PARCC tests. Those in 9th through 12th grade must partake in similar testing if they are enrolled in the following courses:

  • U.S. history.
  • Geometry.
  • Algebra l.
  • English ll.
  • English lll .
  • Biology.

The LDOE noted that these assessments typically take place between January and March and hosts a calendar for parents and students to view. Any students who take part in special education, have an Individualized Education Plan or are English language learners may take adapted versions of the testing. Speak with your school to see if your child requires a specialized PARCC variety.

Why is PARCC testing important?
The PARCC tests were created by state educators to evaluate student progress. In order to successfully move on to the next grade level, kids must understand the base knowledge taught in their current grade. Their abilities will show on the PARCC testing. Consistently low scores may indicate that a teacher needs to make some adjustments to his or her methods to help students learn. Higher scores show the educator is offering proper instruction in the material, and that students understand their work. This means they are ready to move on to the next grade and eventually will be prepared for college.

Helping your kids succeed at the Louisiana PARCC assessments 
Daily in-class assignments and homework is geared toward teaching children the information they need to excel on the PARCC tests. The exams are in line with Louisiana state standards and should not be difficult for students who did their assignments and studied for regular tests. While their normal school grades do not have any affect on PARCC scores, they may show what you can expect to see when the time comes for the standardized exams. For instance, low grades in science class will likely lead to below-average scores on the PARCC exams. Help your children by offering to assist them with homework, hire tutors or talk with teachers to make sure they are learning at the right pace for their grade level. Students may also complete practice tests to ease their fears about the way the exams are laid out and get a feel for the questions.