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Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System

Parents and Guardians of Students in the Class of 2023

October 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians of Students in the Class of 2023:

Enclosed are your child's results from the spring 2021 10th grade MCAS tests. The results are important, because students in the class of 2023 must meet certain requirements to be eligible to receive a high school diploma. I hope this letter will help clarify the graduation requirements for this class.

In English language arts and mathematics, there are three possible results for your child's test. Your child may have:

  • Passed and met the MCAS graduation requirement in one or both subjects by earning a score of 472 or higher in ELA and 486 or higher in Mathematics.
  • Passed (earned a score between 455 and 471 in ELA or between 469 and 485 in mathematics) but needs to complete an Educational Proficiency Plan in that subject area in order to graduate. Each EPP will include a review of your child's strengths and weaknesses, the courses they must take and complete in grades 11 and 12, and a description of the assessments the school will administer to determine whether your child is moving toward proficiency.
  • Not passed, in which case your child can retake the test (several times, if necessary) in order to meet the MCAS graduation requirement. The next retest opportunity will be in November 2021.

For students who have not passed a test in either English language arts or mathematics, the MCAS Performance Appeals Process provides another way for students to demonstrate that they possess the knowledge and skills required to meet or exceed the state's competency determination (CD) standard. Additional information, including eligibility requirements, is available at MCAS Performance Appeals, or you can contact the high school principal or guidance office.

Your child's MCAS scores may also earn them a tuition credit to a Massachusetts public college or university. Students who qualify for the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship will be notified automatically during their senior year. Students who are eligible for the Stanley C. Koplik Certificate of Mastery must apply during their senior year.

Modified Competency Determination (CD) for Science and Technology/Engineering (STE)

In response to the cancellation of MCAS testing in spring 2020 due to the COVID-19 emergency, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education temporarily modified the CD requirement in STE for students in the classes of 2020-2023. Under this change, the CD in STE will be awarded to students in the class of 2023, in their senior year, upon the school district's certification that credit was earned for a relevant course in biology, chemistry, introductory physics, or technology/engineering during their high school career.

If you have questions about graduation requirements, please contact your school guidance counselor or principal or visit Graduation Requirements for more information.


Jeffrey C. Riley
Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education

Last Updated: October 7, 2021

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