Is there a state law requiring that the Department develop and implement state assessments?
Yes. The law is Act 999 of 1999, also known as the Arkansas Comprehensive Testing, Assessment and Accountability Program Act. The law states that the purpose of the legislation "is to provide the statutory framework necessary to ensure that all students in the public schools of this state demonstrate grade-level academic proficiency through the application of knowledge and skills in the core academic subjects consistent with state curriculum frameworks, performance standards, and assessments."
In April 2014, the Department of Education addressed the rules governing the Arkansas Comprehensive Testing, Assessment and Accountability Program (ACTAAP) and adopted a transition to the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) assessment, which is aligned to the new Common Core of State Standards (CCSS) implemented in Arkansas.