AzMERIT is like an annual checkup – an important opportunity to find out how students are doing. Just as doctors check height and weight, teachers and parents use the test to check how students are performing in reading, writing and math.
Although testing is never fun, assessments can be effective tools to support your child’s learning. They can tell you and your child’s teacher if your child is on track to succeed or if he/she needs to spend additional time learning a topic.
Important Things Parents Need to Know
- Who takes the tests? Arizona students in public district and charter schools in third grade through high school take AzMERIT in reading, writing and math each spring. For high school students, these assessments are given at the end of their courses, similar to a final exam.
Note: In February 2018, the Arizona State Board of Education approved a “menu of assessments” for high school students that includes the SAT, ACT, AP, Cambridge and International Baccalaureate exams. Schools can begin administering those tests as a substitute to AzMERIT in the 2018-19 school year. Click here for a list of the 55 high schools that selected to administer a test from the menu of assessments, in place of the AzMERIT exam, during the 2018-2019 school year. They will be required to administer the same assessment for three consecutive years.
- Does my child have to pass AzMERIT to graduate from high school? Students are NOT required to pass the assessment for graduation. All students do need to pass a civics test for graduation.
- When will students take AzMERIT? The AzMERIT spring semester testing window for 2019 runs from April 1-26 for the computer-based tests and April 1-12 for the paper and pencil version of the tests. Check with your school or child’s teacher for testing dates, times, and other specific test administration information.
- How will my child take the test? School districts and charter schools can choose to administer the assessment via pencil/paper or on a computer. Approximately 80% of schools and students across the state opted for the online, computer-based version of AzMERIT in 2017-2018.
- Will my child’s information be protected? Your child’s test data is protected by a number of state and federal laws. Personal student data has never been, and never will be, shared with the federal government.
- When will the results be available? AzMERIT test results are typically released in the summer/early fall of the testing year.
- What are the benefits of AzMERIT? AzMERIT test results provide students with valuable information about how they are doing and if they are prepared for the next grade and eventually for college and career. Students should use the test as an opportunity to check on their progress without the anxiety of needing to pass to graduate.
Tips to Help Your Child
- You can support your child by learning about the skills being assessed on the test, as well as what sample questions might look like and talking with him about it.
- Set shared goals with your child’s teacher for what your child needs to know and be able to do during this school year. Use our grade by grade parent guides to see the key things your child should be learning this year.
- Check in regularly on your child’s progress to see where your child might need help. Use these questions to kick start the conversation with your child’s teachers.
- Help your child continue his learning at home with fun activities you can do together found in our grade by grade guides.
- Talk with your child about the assessment. Your conversations can help your child to not be afraid or anxious when taking the test this spring.
- If test scores look lower than you are used to, talk to your child’s teacher and work together to determine a plan to help your child improve.