Schools

Massachusetts postpones MCAS testing for students

“We want to get kids back to school in a regular routine before they are assessed.”

Students in Brockton High School, March 2, 2021. David L. Ryan / The Boston Globe, File

BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts education officials on Friday postponed this spring’s MCAS testing that would have clashed with plans to bring most students back to the classroom after nearly a year of remote and hybrid learning.

Instead of starting April 5, the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System testing for grades 3, 4 and 5 are being moved to May 10 to June 11, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education said in an email to school districts. Testing dates for grades 6, 7 and 8 are yet to be determined.

State Education Commissioner Jeffrey Riley has said he would take a phased-in approach to reopening schools full-time, starting with elementary schools in April.

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“We want to get kids back to school in a regular routine before they are assessed,” Colleen Quinn, a state education spokesperson, said.

The state already announced in January that this year’s test would be shorter for students in grades 3 to 8 and the competency determination for seniors would be modified.

Merrie Najimy, president of the 116,000-member Massachusetts Teachers Association, said Friday MCAS testing should be canceled entirely this year.

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