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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 Cumference and the Dragon of Pi to introduce students to the relationship between the value of pi and the diameter and circumference of a circle. Emulating the mathematics work of the story’s medieval hero Sir Cumference, the students are challenged to complete circumference calculations by using data collected from real-world objects.

This lesson provides a number of opportunities for students and teachers to engage in the formative assessment process. As students gather and share data, the included resources allow them to elicit and analyze evidence before adding it to the class’s data table. Over the course of the lesson, several opportunities arise for students to engage in discussion, analyze their progress, and make adjustments to meet the intended learning goals. The materials include an interactive PowerPoint presentation that both clarifies the intended learning goals and provides links to web resources that support instruction.

Exploring Pi with ‘Sir Cumference,’” contributed to the Smarter Balanced Digital Library (Digital Library account required) by California State Network of Educators member Sabrina Jordan-Ortega, is designed to span two instructional days. It offers an optional assessment teachers can use to measure progress and culminates with an optional computer-based quiz that provides immediate feedback, allowing students to demonstrate their understanding. The digital content can be downloaded and printed for classroom use.

ELPAC Question Corner

You asked, and we heard you! This week, we answer the following questions received from the field:

 When will the California Department of Education (CDE) publicly report Initial ELPAC results?

Initial ELPAC results will be reported on the CDE’s public reporting site after the end of the 2018–19 school year. Until that time, local educational agencies (LEAs) are required to report Initial ELPAC results to parents within 30 days of enrollment in a California public school. Locally, LEAs can provide educators with access to the official scores after they are generated in the Local Scoring Tool (LST) by uploading the results file into their student information system.

 Who inputs raw scores into the LST?

LEAs have discretion in determining who inputs student raw scores into the LST.

Invitation to LEAs: Field-Testing the California Spanish Assessment

Your LEA is invited to participate in the California Spanish Assessment (CSA) field test from September 17 through October 12, 2018. The purpose of the CSA field test is to gather test response data from students representing diverse backgrounds and geographic locations throughout the state. This is an opportunity for your LEA to experience the assessment, which is designed to measure students’ Spanish skills in reading, writing mechanics, and listening. Once operational, the CSA will provide aggregate data that can be used for evaluating the implementation of Spanish language arts programs at the local level. The data may also provide a high school measure suitable for use, in part, for determining eligibility for the State Seal of Biliteracy.

While any number of school sites and students are welcome to participate, there is an especially high need for participation of students in grade nine. If your LEA is interested in participating in the CSA field test, please contact Marques Barron, CSA Program Administrator, Educational Testing Service, by email at .

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CAASPP Update Issue #215

Focusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System, including the Smarter Balanced assessments—a major component of CAASPP—and the California Alternate Assessments and science assessments.
Last month, the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium passed eight motions to update the Usability, Accessibility, and Accommodations Guidelines (UAAG). The changes, which apply only to specific CAASPP assessments, are as follows:
New universal tools
- Embedded thesaurus
- Embedded line reader

New designated supports
- Non-embedded amplification
- Embedded mouse pointer size and color
New accommodations
- Embedded braille transcript for English language arts listening passages
- Non-embedded word prediction
- Non-embedded braille paper and pencil assessments
In addition, 10 existing policies have been updated for clarification or editorial changes. The updated UAAG, published on June 30, 2017, is available on the Smarter Balanced Accessibility and Accommodations Web page in the "What Are Accessibility Resources?" section.
On another accessibility note, Matrix One is in the process of being updated for the coming administration. The matrix updates will reflect the UAAG changes.
Student Score Reports in Spanish
We are pleased to announce that the 2017 Spanish versions of the Student Score Reports for both Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments and the California Alternate Assessments are now available on the CDE CAASPP Student Score Report Information Web page.
Available—Guide to Understanding Student Score Reports
The 2017 version of the Guide to Understanding the Student Score Report is now available for both Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments and the California Alternate Assessments. These guides come in both English and Spanish, with other translations coming soon. These documents are organized by grade level and provide information about the assessments specific to each grade level.

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