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Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System

Parent/Guardian Information

Dear Parents and Guardians:

Welcome to the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) parent and guardian webpage. The Department has established this page to provide you with information about the MCAS program. The menu on the left side of the screen will link you to this information and other related resources.

I want to call your attention to the following pages that you might find particularly helpful in increasing your understanding of the state's assessment programs.

  • A Message from Commissioner Chester about Statewide Assessments
  • To review some of the actual questions your child answered on the most recent tests, select Test Questions. By looking at these questions along with the "How your child did on individual test questions" section on the back page of the Parent/Guardian Report, you can see the specific questions that your child answered correctly and incorrectly.
  • If you are interested in looking at actual sample student responses and descriptions of student work for open-response questions and the ELA Composition, select Student Work/Scoring Guides.
  • Parents of older children might want to consult Graduation Requirements to learn about the state standards each student must meet in order to be eligible for a high school diploma.
  • Growth Model-Frequently Asked Questions provides an excellent overview of the Department's new growth model. Growth results were reported in Parent/Guardian Reports for the first time this fall.
  • To view information about the MCAS Alternate Assessment or the Massachusetts English Proficiency Assessment, select MCAS-Alt or ACCESS.

I encourage you to view these resources and the others listed in the menu. If you have questions, please contact the Office of Student Assessment at or by phone at 781-338-3625.

Thank you for your interest.


Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D.
Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education

Information for parents/guardians of students who took the spring 2016 MCAS grade 8 Mathematics test

We would like to inform parents/guardians that question 5 that appeared on the PARCC Mathematics portion of the spring 2016 MCAS test was not reported correctly on MCAS Parent/Guardian Reports for approximately half the students. Principals now have the correct scores for these students.

The spring 2016 MCAS grades 3–8 tests in ELA and Mathematics included a small section of questions from the PARCC tests. Test questions in the PARCC sections were scored for informational purposes only and do not count toward MCAS results. The Department included the PARCC sections to allow students to “try out” the different kinds of questions that will appear on the state’s next-generation MCAS tests, which will be administered beginning in spring 2017.

Because this issue did not affect students’ scores on the MCAS test, the Department will not be issuing new Parent/Guardian Reports. However, if you would like to see your child’s corrected score, please contact your child’s school principal.

Class of 2016 Letter to Parents

Last Updated: October 31, 2016
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