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The Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education

Presentation of Preliminary Results from the Spring 2016 Test Administrations

Members of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D., Commissioner
September 16, 2016


At the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education's special meeting on September 26, 2016, I will share preliminary results from the spring 2016 test administrations of the MCAS and PARCC assessments.

As a reminder, districts that gave MCAS in 2015 were allowed to choose which assessment-MCAS or PARCC-that they would administer in their schools in spring 2016 for grades 3-8 ELA and mathematics. Districts that administered PARCC in 2015 were asked to continue administering PARCC tests in 2016 selecting either the computer-based or paper-based version of the assessment.

In 2015, the percentage of districts choosing MCAS and PARCC was roughly even in terms of numbers and in terms of demographics, allowing the Department to create a representative sample of students from each group as a basis for statewide comparisons. This year's assessment choices, however, were distributed in such a way that makes it difficult to create a valid representative sample. Approximately 72% of students took PARCC tests in 2016; the remaining 28% took MCAS tests. As a result, DESE will not report aggregate results at the state level for grades 3-8 ELA and mathematics in 2016.

State-level results will be provided for the grade 10 ELA and Mathematics tests and for the grades 5, 8, and high school Science and Technology/Engineering tests.

Deputy Commissioner Jeff Wulfson and staff from the assessment office will also be at the September Board meeting to answer your questions.

Last Updated: September 19, 2016
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