Several educators, including Baltimore County Superintendent Dallas Dance, said they would like to see more students take the new field test of the PARCC and that other tests routinely given by school systems during the year could be substituted to satisfy the federal requirement.
Dance said the misalignment between the new curriculum and the old tests is particularly difficult in math. Concepts that are tested in one grade on the MSA may now be taught in a different grade under the common core.
He will push to have more county students take the new test, but he also said the county does not have enough computers to give the test online to every student in elementary and middle school. The MSA is a paper and pencil test, but the state will eventually move all testing online.
Many states, caught in the same transition, are continuing to give the old tests, but New York and some other states have paid to create a new test to be given in the interim.
California's legislature voted last week to stop giving its state test for at least one year until a new curriculum and tests are in place. Gov. Jerry Brown has said he supports the legislation, which passed despite U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan's warning that he could take away federal funds from California. Federal funds represent about 10 percent of school budgets there.
Bob Schaeffer, public education director of Fair Test, an organization that is opposed to the extent of testing in public schools, said that children will not benefit from taking the MSA.
State officials "should stand up to Washington and say enough is enough," he said. "Lurching from one set of tests to another is going to make things worse and be disruptive in the short run."
Tribune Newspapers contributed to this story.
Because of incorrect information provided by state education officials, an earlier version of this article gave the wrong cost to administer the MSAs. The Sun regrets the error.