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State Assessments Parent Letter

April 2016


Dear Parent/Guardian,

From April 26th-May 27th, your child will be participating in the state assessment. This set of tests measures how well your child has mastered the skills and content in math and English language arts at his or her grade level and, in grades 5 and 8 and in high school, MCAS will measure how well your child has mastered science and technology/engineering subjects. It is important to remember that these tests are aligned to the instruction that takes place in the classroom every day and were developed with teacher input, so they are consistent with the learning goals in each grade level.  

The test has a variety of questions ranging from traditional multiple choice to those that require students to provide and explain their answers. Teachers can use the results to provide more targeted supports or additional challenges depending on your child’s needs.

The results from this test are not meant to tell the whole story. They are meant to be one of several measures that illustrate how a student is progressing. Test scores should be used along with in-class performance, report cards, and teacher reports to form a complete picture of a student’s achievement.   

For information about the specific dates and times when your child will take the test in each subject, see the testing schedule located on the back of this sheet. I also encourage you to take a look at sample questions at [For MCAS, go to http://www.doe.mass.edu/mcas/testitems.html and http://www.doe.mass.edu/mcas/. For PARCC, go to http://parcc.pearson.com/practice-tests/ and http://bealearninghero.org/classroom/parcc.]

In the Orange Elementary District/School, our goal is for every student to achieve his or her full potential. The MCAS/PARCC tests are just one way that we are able to better understand if we are meeting that goal.  Thank you for all you do to partner with us in your child’s education.  


Thank you,



Christopher Dodge

Principal, Dexter Park School