BOSTON (CBS) – Starting next week, more than half of all elementary and middle school students in Massachusetts will begin taking the new PARCC test.

This is a pilot program as officials decide if the test should replace the MCAS exam.

PARCC is the assessment for Common Core, a controversial new national standard. MCAS is only taken in Massachusetts.

This is the second year of the pilot program to decide if Massachusetts will switch to the new test. PARCC is intended to be taken on the computer — but there is a paper option.

Parents and teachers will get a chance to weigh in on PARCC at public hearings later this spring. An answer on PARCC will be made next fall.

CLICK HERE to take a practice test.

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