The Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education voted to put the following regulatory changes out for public comment. The proposal is to raise the MCAS passing standard for the high school Competency Determination starting with the class of 2026 (this fall’s ninth graders) and changes to the Educational Proficiency Plan and other supports for students’ academic success.
MATSOL is planning to submit comments on behalf of our organization and we are asking for your input and examples to include in the comment. Submit your input to MATSOL via this form to help inform our response: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CYMHW67
You can also submit comments directly to DESE by following this link: https://www.doe.mass.edu/news/news.aspx?id=26763. Comments are due June 3, 2022.
The proposed amendment would establish a new competency determination standard in English language arts, mathematics, and science and technology/engineering for students in the classes of 2026–2029.
Board members expressed particular interest in comments on:
1. The proposed new standard for students in the classes of 2026–2029:
- Students in the classes of 2026–2029 would be required to earn a scaled score of 486 (the scaled score just beyond the midpoint within the Partially Meeting Expectations achievement level category) on the ELA, mathematics, and STE MCAS tests to earn their competency determination in those subjects.
- Students in the classes of 2026–2029 who earn a scaled score of at least 470 (the lowest scaled score in the Partially Meeting Expectations achievement level) would not be required to take an MCAS retest or file an appeal, but they would be required to complete an Educational Proficiency Plan (EPP) in ELA and/or mathematics.
2. Whether a standard should be set now for students in the class of 2030 and beyond, and if so, whether the standard should be Meeting Expectations on the high school MCAS exams.
3. The proposed changes to the Educational Proficiency Plan and other supports for students’ academic success:
- A requirement that the school provide a student’s EPP to their parents/guardians on an annual basis
- A requirement to describe the tutoring or other individualized academic supports the student will receive
- The establishment of different expectations for the EPP for students who are actively enrolled and successfully progressing in the Mass Core curriculum, an approved Chapter 74 vocational-technical program, or a designated Early College or Innovation Pathway program
- Clarifications to the types of courses and assessments required in a student’s EPP
- Clarifications around the expectation for adult learners, students who have exited high school without a CD, seniors who have already completed all their required courses in the relevant subject matter, students who are not continuously enrolled or are enrolled in an alternative program, and students who enroll in senior year