Illinois changing state test for elementary, junior high students

Nearly 2 million students in Illinois’ public schools will start taking the state’s required tests next month.

(Illinois News Network) -- Illinois school leaders are promising younger students in the state a shorter state test, and they're promising schools in the state that they will get those test scores back faster.

Nearly 2 million students in Illinois' public schools will start taking the state's required tests next month. For elementary and junior high kids, the Illinois State Board of Education's Rae Clementz is promising a shorter test. About six hours of testing this year, as opposed to nine-or-so last year.

For schools, Clementz said they'll have a shorter wait for those test scores.

"Results will be rolling into schools beginning in May this year," Clementz said. "Now, next year the goal is to have all results that can be machine scored, to schools within one week of the close of the testing window."

This year's testing window runs from March 11 through the end of April.

Local schools have complained for years that the state test results came in too late to be useful.

The test is also getting a new name. The PARCC test is out, the new test will be called the Illinois Assessment of Readiness.