Updates About 2021 MCAS Testing
Dear RPS Community,
The purpose of this letter is to bring clarity to the questions that many families have submitted about their “right to opt out” of Spring 2021 MCAS testing. Every day families decide to send or not send their children to school. The district acknowledges that families have a right to decide whether their children will participate in MCAS testing. If families choose to not let their children take the MCAS, the district will view that as a refusal to take the test. Technically speaking, there is no “opting out” of the MCAS, just as there is no right to “opt in”. MCAS testing is not a choice; it is a federal and state mandate. If parents/guardians write a letter requesting that their children not take the MCAS, we will mark those students as refusing to take the test. As a result, they will not contribute to our participation rate. Under the current state rules, the participation rate is calculated over a two-year period of time. This participation rate is part of the state’s accountability system and could have negative ramifications for the district in the future if not enough students participate in MCAS this Spring. To reiterate, parent(s)/guardian(s) have the right to refuse taking the MCAS by sending in a letter to the school principal. The district will report all students with a letter to the state as having refused to take the test. If a student does not have written permission for refusal from a parent/guardian, the district will expect that he or she takes the test.