Responding to a parent and educator backlash to the overreach of the new state-administered PARCC testing program, the Illinois State Board of Education has announced it will shorten the number of hours devoted to the testing.

In its first year, the standardized test was given in two parts, over 8-9 sessions. In the next school year, it will be given in one fell swoop with fewer sessions, and the math and English testing will be shortened.

Give the state board, now run by Tony Smith, credit for listening and assessing their test.

While this change in PARCC policy doesn’t change the importance of the test in the overall scheme of things, we hope at least that teachers will be able to devote the time they’ve recouped for instruction that the testing has eroded.