Spring state testing results will set new baseline for achievement

e-Connections Post

Testing season is underway, giving students opportunities to show what they know and for schools to identify learning needs.

Students in grades three through eight and eleven will take the online Smarter Balanced Assessments in math and English language arts and paper-and-pencil science tests.

These tests are tied to the new Common Core State Standards, which are learning goals for students at every grade. The Common Core challenges students to think independently, use technology, solve tough problems, analyze information and construct well-researched arguments.

Last year, students piloted the state’s new Common Core-aligned tests. While some students reported that it was more fun to take a test on a computer, others said the tests were difficult.

Because it was a pilot program, schools, teachers and parents were not given results. This year, results will be made available.

The National PTA offers the following tips for parents in preparing and supporting your child for new tests:

  • Discuss the new tests with your child. Make sure he or she is not scared or anxious going into the new tests.
  • 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 will be more challenging the first few times they take them.
  • 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.
  • Review test results with your child, bringing your child’s teacher into the discussion as necessary.
  • Make sure your child gets a good night’s sleep and a nutritious breakfast before testing.