Oklahoma bails from PARCC joining Alabama and Pennsylvania who also bailed. What make Oklahoma unique is that they are the first governing state to announce they’ll be leaving the consortium. Alabama and Pennsylvania were just participating states. Indiana said they are pulling away from PARCC, but we’re not certain if they will fully pull out of not. Alabama and Pennsylvania were also advisory members of the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium.
State Superintendent Janet Barresi announced Monday that she is withdrawing Oklahoma from testing through a consortium of 20 or so other states to coincide with the new Common Core curriculum standards.
Instead of using new assessments developed through the group, called the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC, Oklahoma will work with a testing company to develop its own new standardized tests for the 2014-15 academic year.
“We came to this decision after many months of deliberation, listening to classroom teachers, curriculum directors, superintendents and visiting with legislative leadership and the governor’s office,” Barresi told the Tulsa World.
Many educators and parents groups have been vocal in recent months about their concern about the additional hours of test-taking that would be involved in PARCC assessments.
Barresi said their concerns, along with her own about the technology readiness of the state’s public schools and higher anticipated costs, were her three primary reasons for backing out.
Update: Jenni White of Restore Oklahoma Public Education has responded to this news with several questions:
- Does it matter if a state belongs to a testing consortia (SBAC or PARCC) if the state creates its own tests to align with the Common Core? So, are the consortia red herrings?
- Much data will be collected via testing. Stopping PARCC won’t stop that. The America Competes Act is FEDERAL LAW and it is what prescribes the type of data to be collect (the 12 data types).
- What is the SDE going to do about the fact that there has been much legislation written that points to PARCC. So do you just make a pronouncement from the thrown that we are getting out of PARCC testing without changing the laws? Do laws matter then, or is our whole system just based on what the OSDE decides to do on a given day?
When I report on state’s pulling out of Common Core consortia while it can be a good thing for the state’s budget and it is a step for them to retake their sovereignty over education it isn’t the silver bullet. The ultimate goal is to see states repeal the Common Core.