We have received a few more questions concerning test administration for Mississippi, due to the State Board’s decision to leave the PARCC Consortium. Below, we explain how this decision will impact third grade retention decisions.
Because the PARCC test would be in its first year of implementation and the rigor was much higher than the previous MCT2, the Mississippi Department of Education decided last spring to use the MKAS2 (Mississippi K-3 Assessment Support System)–the state’s literacy assessment for Kindergarten entry and exit, as well as exit from grades 1,2, and 3–for determining third grade gate decisions. This decision now looks very wise, as using PARCC would have meant that we’d be using a test we may never use again for the first year of these high stakes decisions. In short, Mississippi was not planning to use PARCC for third-grade gate this year, so nothing changes as a result of the State Board’s decision to leave the PARCC Consortium.