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Assessment Spotlight Issue 93 - May 29, 2020

Assessment SpotlightFocusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.Newly Updated Smarter Content Explorer!The Smarter Content Explorer has recently been updated! Offering new features based on educator feedback, this user-friendly web tool combines the information provided in the Smarter Balanced Content and Item Specifications—key resources used in test and item development—into an easy-to-use search interface. Users can access customized content generated by a quick search by subject, grade, and target ...
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Assessment Spotlight - April 10, 2020

Focusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments for Distance LearningWith the widespread closure of schools in California and the suspension of CAASPP testing due to COVID-19, many local educational agencies (LEAs) are serving their students through distance learning. To aid teachers and other LEA staff during this challenging time, the California Department of Education (CDE) will make available, as an optional resource, the Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments for use...
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Assessment Spotlight - March 5, 2020

​Focusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.WebEx for All CAASPP and ELPAC Coordinators—Are You Registered?Calling all local educational agency (LEA) CAASPP or ELPAC coordinators: You asked for more frequent updates from California Department of Education (CDE) staff about assessment-related activities; in response, we are pleased to announce the first CDE-hosted All Coordinators WebEx! This will take place on March 18 at 2 p.m. and will cover updates provided by the CDE as well as a question and answ...
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Assessment Spotlight - February 27, 2020

Focusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.Summative ELPAC Administration Under Way!Local educational agencies (LEAs) should be administering the computer-based Summative ELPAC, which contains audio files for the Listening and Speaking domains. These audio files are played through the test delivery system and are accessed by students on the testing device. LEA ELPAC coordinators are asked to direct site coordinators and test examiners to use the instructions included in the Directions for Administrati...
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Assessment Spotlight - February 12, 2020

Focusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.California Science Test and California Spanish Assessment: 2018–19 Summary ResultsThe 2018–19 summary results for the first operational administration of the California Science Test (CAST) and the California Spanish Assessment (CSA) were made available to the public on February 4, 2020. The summary results are reported at the state, county, district, and school levels by grade and student groups.The CAST and CSA summary results are located on the California D...
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​Assessment Spotlight - Jan 30, 2020

​Assessment SpotlightFocusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.Release of New Smarter Balanced Sample Items and Annotated Anchors Next WeekOn Thursday, February 6, Smarter Balanced will release more than 100 new items on the Smarter Balanced Sample Items website as well as new annotated anchors for the English language arts/literacy (ELA) assessment.This will be the first release of operational test questions from the summative assessments and will highlight the critical role educators serve in item ...
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Assessment Spotlight - January 9, 2020

Assessment SpotlightFocusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.Calendar Reminder: CAASPP and ELPAC System Downtime Fast ApproachingVarious CAASPP and ELPAC systems will be unavailable from Wednesday, January 8, at 5 p.m. through Tuesday, January 14, at 8 a.m. for a scheduled downtime. During the downtime, the following CAASPP and ELPAC systems will not be available:Test Operations Management System (TOMS)Test Administrator InterfaceCompletion Status and Roster Management SystemData Entry InterfaceInte...
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2019 CAASPP Scores Announced

California Department of Education News Release
California Department of EducationNews ReleaseRelease: #19-68October 9, 2019Contact: Scott RoarkE-mail: : 916-319-0818SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond announced today the statewide results of the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) summative assessments for English language arts/literacy (ELA) and mathematics. School districts have had access to their own results since May.For CAASPP, performance continues to improve slightly overall within grades as measured by the Smarter Balanced ELA and mathematics assessments. Statewide results in all tested grades showed that 50.87 percent of students met or exceeded standards in ELA, a .99 percentage point increase from 2018 and a 6.87 percentage point increase from 2015. In mathematics, 39.73 percent of students met or exceeded standards, a 1.08 percentage point increase from 2018 and a 6.73 percentage point increase from 2015.Thurmond acknowledged the slight score increases but expressed deep concern that improvement is less consistent across the score range in the later grades of 7, 8, and 11, with a persistent percentage of students of color not meeting standards and, in several grades, showing declining scores from last year.“Disparities between students of color and their white and Asian peers continue from year to year and demonstrate the importance of our priority initiative of closing the achievement gap. Education equity should mean equity for all students and right now, we are not there,” said Thurmond. “All students should have an equal opportunity to succeed academically and enter the workforce prepared with the needed skills to compete in the industries that drive our state forward.”One plan to address disparities that Thurmond supports is working with data experts to interpret the declining scores and evaluate what is causing the results. Strategies can then be identified for how local educational agencies (LEAs) and educators can improve test scores. “The CDE can work with all educational stakeholders to identify strategies and then explore legislative efforts to support the needs of local districts and provide resources to improve test scores,” Thurmond said.Performance gaps have narrowed (based on tracking the same cohort over time and different cohorts over time) in ELA in most grades between Hispanic or Latino students and white students, Ever-English Learner students and English Only students, and Reclassified Fluent English Proficient students and English Only students.The CAASPP Smarter Balanced ELA and mathematics results are the basis for the academic indicator, and the Summative ELPAC contributes to the English Learner Progress indicator of the California School Dashboard. Thurmond reinforced that test results are only one measurement out of many that the state uses to evaluate schools on the California School Dashboard, which allows educators and parents to identify strengths and weaknesses. Schools and districts that are struggling across Dashboard indicators are flagged for state assistance.This is the fifth year of the computer-based tests, which use California’s challenging academic standards and ask students to write clearly, think critically, and solve complex problems, as they will need to do in college and future careers. During this time period, less than one percent of students did not take part in...
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CAASPP and ELPAC -- Systems Resume

Dear LEA CAASPP or LEA ELPAC Coordinator:Welcome to the 2019–20 school year! CAASPP and ELPAC systems have resumed operation after they were updated to support 2019–20 CAASPP and ELPAC testing.New Test Operations Management System (TOMS) Interface Both the CAASPP and ELPAC TOMS have transitioned to a new combined TOMS interface. Enhancements and new functionality can be previewed on the System Enhancements web page. Share this information with your site staff to introduce them to the new interface. One notable change is with the credentialing functionality for electronic Student Score Reports (SSRs). It has been updated so that credentials only need to be generated once for the 2019–20 year ...
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Assessment Spotlight - June 26, 2019

 Assessment SpotlightFocusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.CAASPP Post-Test Guide Available on CAASPP PortalThe 2018–19 CAASPP Post-Test Guide has been posted on both the Manuals and Instructions web page and the Score Reporting web page of the CAASPP Portal. This guide provides an overview of each assessment, information and guidelines for interpreting and comparing results, and descriptions of the features of the Student Score Report (SSR) for each subject area as well as additional resour...
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CAASPP Announces "MyTOMS" Interface.

Dear LEA CAASPP Coordinator or LEA ELPAC Coordinator:Based on feedback from coordinators, the ELPAC Test Operations Management System (TOMS) and CAASPP TOMS have been integrated into a new and improved system, called MyTOMS. The new MyTOMS will be available for the 2019–20 administrations of both CAASPP and ELPAC according to the following schedule: July 8, 2019—ELPAC functions available within MyTOMS September 3, 2019—CAASPP functions available within MyTOMS During this time between July 8 and September 3, 2019, ELPAC TOMS can be accessed by selecting the [TOMS] button on the ELPAC website at https://www.elpac.org/.CAASPP users will continue to access CAASPP TOMS in the current interface, d...
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Assessment Spotlight - May 2, 2019

 Focusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.New for Families: Starting Smarter WebsitesOn April 25, the California Department of Education (CDE), in collaboration with the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium and Educational Testing Service, launched two new websites to help empower parents/guardians and families to become partners in their children's academic success: Starting Smarter for the CAASPP Starting Smarter for the ELPAC These family-focused websites provide resources to facilitate pa...
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Assessment Spotlight April 25, 2019

Focusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California's other statewide assessments.New for CAASPP and ELPAC: "Get Involved" Web Pages!Are you interested in getting involved in the continuing development of the CAASPP and the ELPAC? We need input from California educators, and it is now much easier for you to find out about the activities the California Department of Education (CDE) has scheduled and to let us know which ones hold your interest! To learn about upcoming activities, visit our new Get Involved web pages: CAASPP Opportunities to...
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CAASPP System Release Dates for 2018-19

Enter your text here ...Dear LEA CAASPP Coordinator: Components of the CAASPP System are released at different times throughout the year. As you set up your local educational agency’s (LEA’s) test administration window and finalize your planning for another successful administration, please keep the following dates in mind: Date Release Milestone September 4, 2018 ·         Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments will be available. September 17, 2018 ·         The California Spanish Assessment (CSA) field test will be available. (Note that the window for the field test closes on October 12,...
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Assessment Spotlight - Issue 5, August 1, 2018

Editor's Note:  We routinely repost messages from the CDE that are marked as "Please share with educators" Focusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California’s other statewide assessments.August’s Featured Digital Library Resource—“Exploring Pi with ‘Sir Cumference’”This month’s featured Digital Library resource, “Exploring Pi with ‘Sir Cumference,’” is a mathematics lesson intended for students in grade seven. It uses the fictional story Sir Cumf...
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CAASPP Update - July 11, 2018

Notes on the ELPAC-  The Initial ELPAC administration window opened on July 1.-  The Local Scoring Tool (LST) became available in the Test Operations and Management System (TOMS) on July 9.-  The Initial ELPAC data file layout will be posted on the ELPAC Test Administration web page by July 13.-  The Initial ELPAC preliminary score sheet and instructions as well as the conversion tables will be posted in TOMS by July 13. They are available for optional summer use by local educational agencies (LEAs) that choose to wait until fall to enter raw scores in the LST."Understanding Your Student Score Report"—in English, Spanish, Mandarin, and Vietnamese—is now available on the E...
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ELPAC Update Issue #4, June 30th, 2017

The English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC) Update, from the California Department of Education (CDE), is an e-mail for K-12 educators, including testing coordinators, which focuses on the English Language Proficiency Assessments for California. When the ELPAC is operational, it will replace the California English Language Development Test (CELDT). The ELPAC Update will be sent once per month beginning March 2017. Please forward this e-mail to any educators in your local educational agency (LEA) who would be interested in or benefit from this information.ELPAC Regulations Approved! Have you heard the news? The ELPAC regulations have been approved and will become effec...
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CAASPP UPDATE #154

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 Summative AssessmentsThe closing of the summative assessment testing window is nearing for many local educational agencies (LEAs). As the testing season winds down, we ask that you:Continue your vigilance regarding security breaches involving the exposure of secure materials and ensure that all test administration environments are secure. The California Department of Education (CDE) is monitoring social media sites to make certain that CAASPP testing content has not been posted. Remember to submit your Security and Test Administration Incident Reporting System (STAIRS) form and/or appeals requests as soon as possible and to follow-up on all requests to ensure that their processing is complete prior to the end of the testing window.Spanish Resource: “Understanding the Student Score Report” Video The Spanish version of the video “Understanding the CAASPP Student Score Report” is now available on the CDE CAASPP Student Score Report Information Web page. This eight-minute video highlights the new features on the score report, using samples of the report in Spanish.The “Other” Testing Issue Category on the STAIRS FormThe CDE has seen an increase in the number of testing issues reported as “Other.” Before selecting the testing issue “Other,” please ensure that your test security incident does not fall into a listed test issue category by referring to the STAIRS—Applicable Testing Issues chart .Note that selecting the category “Other” when a listed issue actually applies may cause a significant delayin the processing of your report. Further explanation of testing incidents can be found in the CAASPP Security Incidents and Appeals Procedure Guide .Accessibility Notes: Reporting an Issue with a Universal Tool, Designated Support, or AccommodationWhen contacting the California Technical Assistance Center to report a universal tool, designated support, or accommodation that does not seem to be functioning correctly, please provide the test session ID number and the student’s Statewide Student Identifier to allow technical staff to investigate the issue in a timely manner. Post-Test Workshop Webcast Tomorrow!Tomorrow, May 19,from 10 a.m. to noon (Part 1) and 1 to 3 p.m. (Part 2), Educational Testing Service, in partnership with the CDE and WestEd, will present a Webcast of the 2015–16 CAASPP Post-Test Workshop “Connecting Assessments to Instruction.”The purpose of this Webcast is to inform LEAs of the various components of the 2015–16 CAASPP assessment student results and reports and how they can be used to inform instruction. Topics will include:Principles of scoring (including high-level information on the scoring of the online Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments)Using the Online Reporting SystemUnderstanding how to access, use, and interpret the 2015–16 student reports and results to improve classroom instructionProviding supplementary resources and reference materials to assist LEA CAASPP coordinators with their training efforts to improve teaching and learningThis Webcast  is open to all school and district staff—please notify curriculum instruction leaders, professional development leaders, and/or LEA representatives who would disseminate the information to other teachers in your LEA. No preregistration or logon account is required. The Webcast and related materials will later be archived and available in the “Webcast Archives” section on the CAASPP Current Administration of the CAASPP System Tests Training Videos and Resources Web page .Survey Reminder—HumRRO’s Smarter Balanced...
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CAASPP Scores Reports move to Electronic Delivery

​​Editor's note:  Below is a communication sent out by the CDE on April 26, 2018 detailing some of the information regarding the transition from paper distribution of CAASPP test scores to the electronic distribution (e.g. secure PDF files sent via email to parents).  The effort is being headed up by CDE and ETS and additional details are available in the CALPADS vendor notes.​Dear County and DistrictSuperintendents and Charter School Administrators: CALIFORNIA ASSESSMENT OF STUDENTPERFORMANCE AND PROGRESS TRANSITION TO ELECTRONIC STUDENT SCORE REPORTSIn spring 2014, California tookthe bold step of transitioning almost completely from paper assessments toonline assessments with the...
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CAASPP Update #221 August 30th, 2017

Postponement of Public Release of 2016–17 CAASPP Summary Results During the preview period of the 2016–17 CAASPP public Web reporting site, some local educational agencies (LEAs) identified a small number of cases in which test results did not appear to aggregate as expected to their district or charter school summaries. The CDE delayed the release of the statewide test results in order to investigate these reported cases. The issue impacts only the CAASPP public Web reporting site and the research files available from that site for 2016–17. Please be assured that the individual student achievement levels and scale scores that have been reported to your LEA or direct funded ch...
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