• A good testing system is tied directly to good teaching and learning. In Massachusetts, we set high learning standards that describe what a student should know and be able to do at each grade level and in each subject. To find out how well students understand what is being taught, educators give students both local and state tests. Using these test results, school districts and teachers can identify areas where students need more help, refine lesson plans, and even select different curriculum resources to help students reach high expectations. The MCAS tests, used in concert with ambitious learning standards, have played an important role in the achievement gains of the past 20 years. Our K-12 public school students lead the nation in academic achievement and are competitive internationally. That success would not have been possible without a high-quality testing system that provides feedback on student, school, district, and state achievement and progress. In Monomoy Regional School District, we see the benefit of our students participating in MCAS. For individual students: we gain insight into each child’s strengths and celebrate those strengths; we identify the supports we need to provide so each child acquires the essential knowledge, skills, and understandings needed for college/career readiness; and we create and/or identify opportunities for assistance or advancement outside of school. For the school: we assess the relative strengths/alignment of our curriculum; we use data to inform master schedules/assign students to enrichment and/or remediation courses; and we identify strengths and opportunities for improvement in teacher performance.