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Press Release

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Sandy Boyd, Achieve,
(202) 419-1542

PARCC Awarded Additional Race to the Top Funds for State Transition to Common Core State Standards and Common Assessments

WASHINGTON – September 29, 2010 – The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) has announced that the Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers Consortium (PARCC or Partnership) will be awarded an additional $15.87 million in a supplemental grant to support the states participating in PARCC in successfully transitioning to Common Core State Standards and next generation assessments.

DOE awarded "Race to the Top" assessment funds to PARCC earlier this month for the development of a K-12 assessment system aligned to the Common Core State Standards in English language arts and mathematics, which will help states dramatically increase the number of students who graduate high school ready for college and careers.

“I was excited to learn that the U.S. Department of Education would be awarding an additional $15.87 million to PARCC,” said Florida Education Commissioner Dr. Eric J. Smith. “These additional funds will prove vital in helping member states make successful transitions to the new standards and assessments through professional development opportunities, technology enhancements, and increased communication activities to all stakeholders. Equally important, the funds will augment our coordination efforts with the other assessment consortium, allowing us to share ideas and solutions that will ultimately benefit all participating states.”

Mitchell Chester, Massachusetts Education Commissioner and chair of PARCC’s Governing Board, noted, “Committing to prepare all students for college and careers is the easy part. The harder and more important task is to ensure that higher standards are taught in every classroom and that teachers and students have the tools they need to succeed. These additional funds will help make that possible. By working together, states can make greater – and faster – progress than we can if we go it alone. This opportunity is well placed; improving education is not only key to individual opportunity, but to the success of our citizens and our nation in a global economy.”

In addition to Florida and Massachusetts, the governing states that are leading the 26-state Partnership are: Arizona, the District of Columbia, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, New York, Rhode Island and Tennessee.

For a summary of the PARCC proposal, go to www.achieve.org/PARCCsummary.