Teachers who have complained about too much standardized testing received a welcome announcement today. In a memorandum dated June 23, Deputy Superintendent Shawn Joseph announced that students would no longer be required to take Mandatory Unit Systemic Tests (MUST) assessments. (See the full memorandum at the end of the post.)
Previously, both reading and mathematics MUST exams were administered at least twice during the school year to students, beginning in third grade and continuing through high school. (See one local middle school’s testing calendar here.) The recommendation to eliminate MUST tests came from the Assessment Cross-Functional Team, a team that was established by PGCPS to find ways to reduce the amount of county-mandated standardized testing.
This announcement comes on the heels of last month’s decision by the PARCC Governing Board to reduce test time and consolidate testing windows. In the last legislative session, the Maryland General Assembly approved a commission to review Maryland’s standardized testing system.