On of the state's two teachers' unions is calling for parents to get better information about how to opt out of standardized tests.
In a resolution, the executive committee of the National Education Association Rhode Island says the state and local districts should provide written information to parents about their right to remove children from testing.
The resolution stresses that teachers have a free speech right to talk to parents about opting out of testing, including the new multi-state test known as PARCC.
"Open dialogue is essential in the parent and educator relationship; as a result, no educator should be disciplined in any school or district for discussing – with students, parents, or community members – options available to parents for opting students out of PARCC or other high-stakes standardized assessment," the resolution reads in part.
State officials responded by saying all students are expected to participate in state testing.
"Assessments provide important information to parents and families about the progress their children are making in school," State Education Commissioner Deborah Gist said in a statement. "Assessments provide teachers with information that will help them improve and personalize instruction, and they provide all of us with information about how well our schools are making progress."
In a second resolution, the union called for the state to suspend PARCC testing, citing disruptions in the school year from snow days.
The test is slated to be used for the first time, outside of an earlier pilot program, in March.