(Trenton) – Assemblyman Benjie E. Wimberly (D-Bergen, Passaic), an educator with nine years in the classroom and a father of three students in public schools, expressed concern with the pending PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of readiness for College and Careers) test and supports deferring the use of test results until statewide concerns are addressed.
“We should be concerned for students statewide when using a commercially -developed standardized assessment is used to set educational standards for our students and rate the effectiveness of our teachers,” Wimberly said.
“This test is especially a concern in districts, such as Paterson, where technology in schools are often outdated or grossly inefficient to prepare students for an exam that relies on a student’s use of a computer.”
Wimberly plans to join his Assembly colleagues in sponsoring legislation (A-4190) that would defer use of the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) assessment test results in academic decisions. He is also sponsor of legislation (A-3079) that would prohibit a school district from administering a commercially-developed standardized assessment, except for diagnostic purposes.
PARCC testing has begun for some school districts; however, Wimberly says its not too late to stop the testing for the other districts.
“Questions and concerns have been raised statewide surrounding the effectiveness of PARCC,” Wimberly added. “Is this the right test for our students? Or are we setting our students and teachers up for failure? Until we have answers to these questions, we should defer the use of PARCC testing results.”
The bill to defer PARCC (A-4190) was approved on Monday _-_ by the full Assembly. It now heads to the Senate for further consideration.
“PARCC testing has the potential of unfairly categorizing students academically and basing teacher evaluations on their scores,” continued Wimberly. “This will become another obstacle for students and teachers who are already dealing with dilapidated facilities, limited access to basic educational materials and technology and the lack of proper funding if we do not do something about this now.”