More than 40 superintendents in Illinois school districts are urging state education officials to delay a requirement that students take a Common Core test known as PARCC this spring, saying that they are not confident that they can administer the test properly and questioning whether the data obtained from the test will have any value.

The PARCC test was created by the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, one of two federally funded multistate consortia tasked with creating new Common Core tests with some $360 million in federal funds. (The other is the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium.) In 2010, PARCC had 26 member states, but it has suffered major defections since then, with fewer than a dozen states now committed to using the PARCC exam this year. Mississippi pulled out this month, and Chicago Public Schools, the third-largest system in the country, recently decided to buck a state mandate to give the PARCC to all of its students this school year.

Superintendent Trisha Kocanda of Winnetka Public Schools in Illinois recently wrote a “warning” letter to parents, community members and district staff about the PARCC Common Core exam that students in the state will be taking in March and May, saying:

As we learn more about the assessment, we grow wary. We are concerned about the amount of instructional time it will displace, the impact this will have on students, and the usefulness of the results.

It turns out that she isn’t the only superintendent in Illinois who is concerned about PARCC. In the following letter, 42 superintendents ask state officials for a delay in PARCC testing, and the letter following that is from another Illinois superintendent.


And here’s an open letter from


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