Today the Arkansas Senate joined the Arkansas House voting to pass HB 1241. They voted in favor of the measure 29 to 0 with five State Senators not voting. The bill has been amended from the original House version that completely shut the door on the use of PARCC. The Senate version could have the same impact, but it also leaves the door open.
The bill as it stands right now requires the State Board of Education to not renew their membership or involvement with PARCC. Like the House bill, it still allows PARCC to be administered this school year. Then the bill’s language gets a little fuzzy. “The state board shall take into consideration any recommendations that are made by the Governor’s Council on Common Core Review before entering into any contract or agreement related to statewide assessments for public school students for the 2016-2017 school year,” the bill reads.
So theoretically the State Board could, as I understand this, opt to readopt PARCC as an assessment not next school year, but the one after. Not that it will necessarily take place, but it could. Regardless this is a big step for the state. Since the bill was amended it returns to the Arkansas House to be voted on.