MCAS information for Grades 7-11, 2021

MCAS information for Grades 7-11, 2021

Good morning everyone, 

This was emailed out to students and staff on Tuesday May 5th. I am posting it here in case the email was missed.

Please email with questions or concerns.


Thank you in advance for taking the time to read this email in detail as it contains a lot of information in relation to the upcoming MCAS tests. Grade 11 students who indicated in the survey that they would like to take the tests this year have already been sent important information about MCAS - check your school email.

We are about to start the journey towards MCAS testing for 2021 and students will soon be introduced/ reminded of the process for our computer based (CBT)and paper based testing (PBT) for this year. 

MCAS tests are required by state and federal law and are an important tool to promote student success and educational equity. 

High school students in the class of 2023 (10th graders) must take and pass the MCAS tests in English Language Arts (ELA) and mathematics to earn a high school diploma, in addition to meeting local requirements. Students in the class of 2024 (9th graders) will take tests in ELA and mathematics next year, and they are also required to take and pass a test in science and technology/engineering (they will take the science test this year or next). Students will have opportunities to retest if they do not pass. 

The high school MCAS tests also provide the opportunity for students to qualify for several state awards. These include the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship and the Stanley Z. Koplik Certificate of Mastery. Students in the class of 2022 (11th graders) are not required to participate in MCAS testing this spring, but they can choose to do so to qualify for these awards. They may also choose to wait until the next testing opportunity in fall 2021 to take the tests and attempt to qualify at that time. 

In addition, MCAS test results will: 

  • give information about areas of learning that have been most impacted by the pandemic,

  • provide important data on which students, schools, and districts have been most affected by pandemic-related changes in schooling, and

improve understanding of your child’s knowledge and skills in relation to the state’s learning standards, so that we can provide the best system of support and instruction in future years.

Schedule & Parent Information

Please be aware of the schedule. It can be found, here

Parents/guardians who are interested in learning more about the tests themselves, DESE have put together a number of useful resources, here. Student expectations during testing are explained, here

Grade Level and Tests

Grade 10 - ELA and MATH -  Computer Based Testing (CBT)

Grade 9 - Introduction to Physics or Biology - Paper Based Testing (PBT)

Grade 8 - ELA, MATH & Science CBT

Grade 7 - ELA & MATH CBT

Staff will be reviewing expectations and supporting students with the testing process in preparation for the respective tests later in the term. This includes familiarity with the testing technology as well as looking at past papers.


If you are planning on bringing and using your own devices for testing and not using a school chrome book:

All students were asked to complete a survey indicating the type of device they have/ need. Students who are planning on bringing and using their own devices must make sure that they have downloaded  the TESTNAV link onto their device prior to setting foot in the building on test day.

Staff will be going through this during A block on Weds, but this is to let you know so that you can also check with your child. 

For windows the click on the Windows .exe  for Mac click on the OSX/MacOS link.  


Day of the test

Please make sure that students have slept well and eaten breakfast prior to coming to school. There will be a snack available for students who have not been able to have breakfast before travelling to school.

After Testing

The vast majority of tests are scheduled from 8 - 10am. This is followed by a lunch break. Students are expected to remain in school for the remainder of the day. It is important that students are able to take advantage of what little time remains in person for the rest of the year. Staff will adjust lessons to account for students taking a test earlier in the day.