Teaching, Learning & Testing

Teaching, Learning, and Testing

Massachusetts was the first state in the nation to institute learning standards that outline what all students are expected to know and be able to do in each subject area and grade level.

These standards aren't classroom curriculum. Curriculum—lesson plans, books, materials, and other resources—are all selected locally by the school district, school, or individual teachers.

To find out how well students understand what is being taught, educators give students local and state tests. School districts and teachers use test results to identify areas where students need more help and where teachers should adjust the curriculum or their instruction to help students reach high expectations.

Each student learns differently, so the state supports a variety of educational options for K-12 students and adult learners.

Massachusetts recently adopted revised learning standards in math and in English language arts and literacy, representing more than a year of work by Massachusetts educators and ESE staff.

The Rhode Island Department of Education is in talks with ESE to use the next-generation MCAS for its students in grades 3-8 starting in spring 2018.

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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370

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