Principal’s Update March 27, 2016 – PARCC

Dear Families,

I hope you enjoyed the long weekend.

This week I am writing regarding the Massachusetts PARCC testing, scheduled for this spring. As we did last year, Concord Public Schools is participating in the computer-based PARCC tests. This year, the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education consolidated the annual state assessments to occur during a single testing window, late April through early June.

At CMS we are scheduling differently this year to ensure appropriate support for our students. As a result, our overall testing window will run from April 27 through May 24. At each grade level, students will complete tests as follows:

Grades 6-8: English Language Arts, 3 sessions, 90-110 minutes each

Grades 6-8 Mathematics, 3 sessions, 80 minutes each

Grade 8 only, Science, Technology & Engineering, 2 sessions, approximately 60 minutes each

CMS PARCC Schedule by Grade and Building

As with MCAS, there is no additional preparation (studying) for students for the PARCC tests. We will conduct two short practice sessions in April prior to the testing dates to ensure that students are able to log in to the testing system, and to practice navigating the online tools.

The best way for students to be prepared is for them to get a good night’s sleep and eat a nutritious breakfast. The school schedule will be adjusted for testing at each grade level; students who are testing will miss the first 2-3 class periods to complete the test, then follow the daily schedule as planned. Students should bring a book (no e-readers) to each test session, along with their fully-charged laptop. No other electronic devices are permitted in the testing areas.

All students attending public schools in Massachusetts are expected to participate. DESE does not permit “opting out.” If you have questions about the assessments or our schedule, please don’t hesitate to contact me at

Please see upcoming events below, and have a great week!


Lynne Beattie, CMS Principal

Upcoming Events:

5th to 6th Grade Parent & Student Orientation Meeting

Wednesday, March 30, 6:30-8:00 pm, Sanborn Auditorium

7th & 8th Grade Spring Dance

Friday, April 1, 7:00-9:00 pm, Sanborn Cafeteria

Tickets $5.00, sold at the door

This event is intended for CMS students only. Guests of CMS students may accompany only if they are Concord residents and arrive accompanied by a parent to introduce, sign them in, and provide emergency contact information.

April Break – No School April 18-22

PARCC Testing Begins – Wednesday, April 27th

CMS PARCC Full Schedule by Grade and Building