Level the PARCC field
While I understand the excitement that the Howard and Carroll County school systems have with regards to their PARCC scores (“State releases district-level PARCC scores for Maryland students,” Sept. 27), at least 50 percent of their students did not pass the assessment. What’s so disturbing is the Maryland State Department of Education stated that last year’s scores were just a baseline and this year’s scores would provide more accurate data. As a teacher in Baltimore County Public Schools, I observe on a daily basis how hard our faculty works to prepare the students for the exam as well as other life skills, yet 30 percent to 35 percent of our students passed the exam.
Which brings me to the real issue existing in Maryland, and that is the racial disparity between the “have” and “have-nots.” It is no secret that Howard and Carroll County schools serve a predominantly white and advantaged population. So what is the solution? Require the economically advantaged students to take the PARCC Assessment and allow the teachers of the disadvantaged communities the teaching opportunities to bring their students up to their assigned academic grade level. Once the student has mastered their grade, only then would they be eligible to take the PARCC Assessment.