By Michelle Caffrey | South Jersey Times

Campus tours. Early decisions. First picks and safety schools. Guidance counselors in high schools throughout the state are juggling the usual load of student worries that emerge every fall, but this year counselors face their own monumental challenge ahead — a complete overhaul of the state’s standardized testing model.

The Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC, tests will appear in front of students at every school in the state this spring, hand-in-hand with the implementation of the new nationwide curriculum standards, Common Core.

It will be the first time every school is required to administer the technology-based exam to all undergraduate students, and while the students’ scores won’t yet be used to determine whether or not they’re prepared to graduate, it will become the de-facto test required for graduation starting in 2019. Since guidance counselors serve as graduation gatekeepers, PARCC preparation has put them on one of the front lines.


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