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February 24, 2015

N.J. Assembly passes bill to delay impact of PARCC exams

Education Standardized Testing
Standardized Testing Debate Ty Wright/AP

By the end of the year, about 12 million children in 28 states and the District of Columbia will take exams that are expected to be harder than traditional spring standardized state tests they replace.

The New Jersey Assembly passed a bill Monday that would delay the use of new state standardized tests to determine student placement for three years, reports.

Bill A4190 would prohibit the Department of Education from using Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) exam results to evaluate students and teachers during the 2015-2016 through 2017-2018 school years.

"This is not a Democratic bill, this is not a Republican bill, this is not a conservative bill, this is not a liberal bill," said Assemblyman Patrick Diegnan (D-Middlesex), who introduced the legislation. "This is a bill that really basically puts a time out on the process of PARCC, which is out of control at this particular point."

The new computerized tests for students in grades 3-11 will be used this year as a 10 percent weight in the evaluations of some teachers, but will not be used to determine the placement or promotion of students. The tests will not be a graduation requirement until 2019 but are one option students can use to meet graduation criteria.

The bill, which was approved 63-7-3, now heads to the state Senate.

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