My child has opted out of PARCC testing

This morning, I sent the following email to my child’s teacher and principal:

Good morning,

[my child] and I had a discussion about the PARCC test (and associated prep), and we have come to the conclusion that she will not be participating in the PARCC. I gave [my child] the choice, as is my right as a parent and protected under the Constitution, but I did not want to force my desires on her choice; I am merely supporting her choice. Of course, if she should decide to take the PARCC, that is her choice, but I will not suffer being bullied into that choice; I say that more to ISBE and the federal government, NOT to anyone in Unit 4, because I do not believe Unit 4 will bully my child in any way.

Please note, this is nothing against [my child’s teacher], [my child’s principal], [my child’s school], or Unit 4; I personally think the implementation of the test, particularly the interface, totally sucks. [my child’s teacher] already has superior methods of assessing my child, and the PARCC does not add any value to my child’s education.

Also note that I will be informing other parents they have a right to make this choice as well. [my child] was worried that there would be negative repercussions to not taking the test, and I have convinced her that there will be none.

[my child] and I also talked about what she could do while “not taking the test”, and I reminded her that she will have a chromebook (or at least a netbook) and can work quietly on normal school work, like Scratch, eToys,, etc.

You know me, I am always up for further discussion if you want to talk more. *grin* Having said that, I do not hold any obligation over you (plural, including the entire school and the school district) to respond – no response necessary. But certainly welcome. *grin*

I followed up with a link to a document I used as legal reference:–_pDKRgGI_zrw/mobilebasic?pli=1


Since sending that email and forwarding it to various individuals (PTA, friends, etc), I have had some interesting feedback. Some are concerned about whether this will hurt the school or the school district. It is my understanding, as the document above mentions, that school districts have a mandate to offer the test, but there is no mandate that a child must take the test. Splitting hairs? Maybe. But a quick google search will show you plenty of folks up in arms about PARCC. Others have chimed in with their own apprehensions.


Finally, I also have submitted a over-simplified question to the school district administration and board of education – still waiting for an answer:

“Do parents have the right to opt their child out of PARCC testing?”


Obviously, I believe the answer is “yes”. However I would like the district to have a formal response in black and white.

Posted in Community. Tags: , . 9 Comments »

9 Responses to “My child has opted out of PARCC testing”

  1. Kathy R. Says:

    I am very much looking forward to hearing what official response you receive!

    • charlesdschultz Says:

      None so far. My guess is that Mr. Lockman has to look up the relevant statutes and legislation and report back to Dr. Wiegand. I fully expect them to say something like “we cannot advise you one way or the other”, which I will gladly interpret as “we really want to say yes, but Big Brother won’t let us, so we are saying ‘no comment’.”

  2. kshannon617 Says:

    You might find this an interesting read–it’s a letter from a woman opting out of PARCC testing to the superintendent who is discouraging that.

  3. pattsi Says:

    For heavens sake this is not akin to choosing not to vaccinate a child and thus potentially exposing many children to a contagious disease, aka the measles right now. Where are the studies showing that these testing mechanisms are in place as money makers rather than assessments of children’s educational progress?

  4. charlesdschultz Says:

    I had a fantastic conversation with ISBE Director of Assessments Angela Chamness yesterday, and will be writing a post to summarize that conversation. Additionally, I had an open email discussion with Brian Minsker, which does an excellent job of providing more details and painting a more clear “big picture” – you can find an archive of that conversation on Yahoo Groups, although the interface is a little tricky at first, so look for the “read more” arrows:
    PTA Council Yahoo Group thread of PARCC

  5. Kelly Says:

    Hi Charles,
    My name is Kelly Youngblood and I’m a reporter for I’m doing a story on the PARCC testing and what local districts are saying about it. I would like to talk to a parent who will opt their child out of the test. Would you be willing to answer a few questions for the article? Either via email or phone would be great- just let me know. Thanks!

  6. pattsi Says:

    Charles, why not make it easy and copy the Yahoo posting here?

    • charlesdschultz Says:

      Because that is not easy. 🙂 Not that it is hard, just time consuming and I usually strip out some of the information (email addresses, date of delivery) when I copy email to a page.

  7. Current thoughts on the PARCC | Citizen4: A citizen's blog about Champaign Unit 4 Says:

    […] my last post, I have had a number of conversations that have made it harder for me to decide where I fall on […]

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