California’s academic standards—the things we want students to know and be able to do—are designed so students graduate ready for college and a career. One way we measure their progress is through the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) assessments. Students across California in grades 3–8 and high school take these assessments each spring. These tests were created specifically to gauge each student’s performance in English language arts/literacy (ELA), mathematics, and science. These tests measure the skills called for by the academic standards, including the ability to write clearly, think critically, and solve problems.
Because CAASPP tests are given statewide, they provide an opportunity to measure the skills of all students against the same academic standards. Given online, the tests are computer-adaptive, allowing more precise measurement of individual skills.
This year, your child will take the following tests:
- Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments for ELA and mathematics (3rd-8th and 11th grade)
- California Science Test – Pilot (5th grade, 8th grade and high school)
Smarter Balanced Assessments
The Smarter Balanced ELA and mathematics tests reflect California’s rigorous academic standards and allow students to demonstrate analytical writing and critical thinking skills as well as their knowledge of facts. In 2017, parents will be able to compare results across three years (2014–15, 2015–16, and 2016–17) to determine their child’s progress in meeting the standards. (Exceptions: Only two years of data will be reported for students in grade 4, and only one year of data will be reported for students in grades three.)
To learn more about these tests, please visit CDE’s Test Score Guide Web site at http://www.testscoreguide.org/ca which provides informative guides and test score descriptions as well as sample test items at different levels of difficulty. Another great resource is the Practice and Training Test site, which can be found on the CDE’s Smarter Balanced Practice and Training Tests Web page at www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/sa/practicetest.asp. Here, parents can experience the kinds of questions that students will encounter on the tests.
If you have any questions regarding your child’s participation in statewide assessments, please contact your school site.
Dr. Doug Kimberly