Advisory Committee on College Readiness

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Leaders from Massachusetts, Louisiana Named Co-Chairs of PARCC's Advisory Committee on College Readiness

September 30, 2011 - Higher education leaders from Massachusetts and Louisiana have been appointed co-chairs of a committee that will serve an integral role in developing K-12 assessments that provide a true picture of college and career readiness.

The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) has appointed Dr. Richard M. Freeland, Commissioner of Higher Education for Massachusetts, and Dr. Joseph Savoie, President of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, to head the Advisory Committee on College Readiness (ACCR). The ACCR, a group of higher education experts from more than 20 states and education associations, will help PARCC develop assessments that will be accepted as an indicator that a student is ready for college-level work in mathematics and English at both two- and four-year institutions of higher education.

"I believe that Massachusetts and the nation will achieve greater college participation and success only through strong collaboration between K-12 and higher education,” Dr. Freeland said. “The Advisory Committee on College Readiness will provide a practical avenue for advancing the higher education engagement work taking place in the PARCC states. For colleges and universities to accept the PARCC assessment as an indicator of readiness for first-year, credit-bearing courses will require higher education stakeholders at all levels to have confidence in that assessment. The Advisory Committee on College Readiness will help ensure that higher education plays a critical role in validating both the common core and the assessments and in legitimizing their adoption and implementation within the states."

"In the U.S., about one in four high school students leave each year without earning a diploma. And many of those who do graduate do not have the academic preparation and skills to succeed in college and careers,” Dr. Savoie said. “In an increasingly competitive economy that demands more education than ever before, we simply have to address this national challenge. That is why the work of PARCC is so important."

The ACCR will address and provide input on four key college and career readiness policy issues:

  • The design of the high school assessments that will be used to make college- and career-ready determinations.
  • The priority content and standards to be assessed.
  • The name and definition of the performance level that will indicate college and career readiness and the process that will be used to determine scores that indicate that level; and
  • Determining the college- and career-ready cut score.

The ACCR met for the first time on Monday, September 26 (you can view the agenda here) and will meet at least bi-annually over the next three years, as the PARCC assessments are developed and implemented.

For more information about Dr. Freeland, click here.

For more information about Dr. Savoie, click here.

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PARCC is an alliance of states working together to develop common assessments serving nearly 25 million students. PARCC's work is funded through a four-year, $185 million dollar grant from the U.S. Department of Education. Partners include about 200 higher education institutions and systems representing hundreds of campuses across the country that will help develop the high school component of the new assessment - and then put it to good use as an indicator of student readiness. PARCC is led by its member states and managed by Achieve, a nonprofit group with a 15-year track record of working with states to improve student achievement by aligning K-12 education policies with the expectations of employers and the postsecondary community. PARCC's ultimate goal is to make sure all students graduate from high school college- and career-ready. For more information, visit

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