State Education Officers Vote to Move Forward with a Request for Proposal

Contact: Patience B. Peabody
Director of Communications, Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE), DC
202-654-6120
Patience.Peabody@dc.gov

Vote Reaffirms Commitment to Deliver Expanded Choice and Flexibility to States

WASHINGTON (April 12, 2016) – The state education leaders who make up the Governing Board of the Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) have voted to move forward with a Request for Proposal (RFP) following the release of a Request for Information (RFI) and an “open forum” this past February. The vote to move forward with an RFP is just the next step in the process in preparing for the long term future of state assessments and expanding access to high quality test content to all states.

The current, full PARCC test and other PARCC instructional supports will continue to be available to states and this process will not disrupt the current administration of the PARCC test or in the 2016-2017 school year and beyond.

“This vote is just a continuation of the process that we began last fall when we announced to make new options available for states as well as the intent to pursue a potential new structure,” said Hanna Skandera, New Mexico Secretary of Education. “Over the past five years, we’ve witnessed a remarkable achievement as the PARCC consortium has grown from what was essentially a start-up endeavor into a world-class product that has been administered to 5 million students across 11 states plus the District of Columbia. Our decision today is a commitment to continue to evolve and improve access to high quality test content in states.”

Last November, as the consortium unveiled new options for states to access high-quality summative content starting in the 2016-17 school year, they also announced an intent to pursue a potential new structure that would allow all states to continue to create high-quality assessment content collaboratively, while offering greater flexibility and increased access to that content for any state seeking to strengthen its summative assessment. In February, the Governing Board hosted an “open forum” and released the RFI which received a robust set of responses from both the education and testing communities.
Specifically, the RFI sought input on ways to:

  1. Expand access to the highest quality test content to all states;
  2. Allow states more choices and the ability to customize their test;
  3. Maintain test quality and comparability across states;
  4. Allow for state collaboration on content creation;
  5. Ensure states benefit from economies of scale;
  6. Create stability and sustainability for states in the development and delivery of high quality assessments.

“The new options provided for states last fall coupled with the potential for a new entity to continue the collaboration of producing the best test content will help states as they are examining a variety of educational related issues under the new Every Student Succeeds Act passed by Congress and signed into Law this past December,” said Tony Smith, State Superintendent of Illinois.

The Governing Board intends release an RFP later this summer in hopes to identify an organization(s) and/or vendor(s) to create the desired structure and provide the necessary products and services to ensure the future and sustainability of high quality testing content.

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The Governing Board intends release an RFP later this summer in hopes to identify an organization(s) and/or vendor(s) to create the desired structure and provide the necessary products and services to ensure the future and sustainability of high quality testing content.

Read the full PDF here