New state tests set baseline for student data

e-Connections Post

The California Department of Education has indicated that it will release results from the state’s new online testing program sometime next month.

All public school students in grades 3-8 and 11 participated in the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) tests in English and Math last spring. The tests are very different from the old paper-and-pencil exams of the past.

These interactive tests require students to analyze information, use technology, solve challenging problems, write explanations and defend their answers. The tests were designed to help schools identify learning gaps and better support students.

Because the new tests are so different from the previous Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) program, CAASPP results should not be compared to STAR results. Instead, this year’s results will set a new starting point for student achievement against which performance can be compared for years to come.

Once SCUSD receives individual student reports from the state, they will be mailed home to parents. After the state publicly releases school and district data, those results will be available online at the CDE website (www.cde.ca.gov).

Supporting Your Child

  • Make sure your child understands that the test results establish a baseline: No one expects a student to master a test he/she is experiencing for the first time.
  • With older children, explain that the new tests were created to help him or her better prepare for college and career.
  • Explain to your child that the new tests are more challenging but schools will work hard to prepare them with the skills they’ll need.
  • Tell your child that you and his or her teacher have high expectations and that you are both there to help them every step of the way.