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Legal challenge could halt PARCC testing in New Mexico

A legal challenge by a Washington-based testing company may halt a controversial assessment exam in New Mexico that has sparked school walkouts and anger from parents and teachers.

A Santa Fe judge is scheduled to hear arguments Tuesday in an appeal by the American Institutes for Research. The company is fighting the state’s granting of a potentially multi-year contract for Common Core testing to Pearson.

AIR wants to limit Pearson’s contract to a year and is seeking another bidding process for later contact years.

Pearson was contracted by the state to administer the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers exam, or PARCC.

A change could have ripple effects beyond New Mexico.

A Mississippi contract review board, for example, recently ruled that the multistate PARCC consortium improperly chose vendor Pearson without a competitive process.

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