Testing and Accountability
Responses to these frequently asked questions are advisory only. Charter schools and charter authorizers are encouraged to review the actual laws and regulations that provide the basis for these responses and consult with their own legal counsel regarding the application of any of these issues to a specific situation.
- Q.1. Can a charter school require each student to participate in state testing?
- Q.2. Is there flexibility for how charter schools administer the Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) Program?
- Q.3. What responsibilities do charter schools have to identify students as English learners?
Charter school pupils are required to participate in all statewide assessments that are applicable to pupils in noncharter public schools. Parents have the right to waive, under specified conditions, state testing requirements for the STAR program. A charter school cannot disregard or take away this parental right.
Q.2. Is there flexibility for how charter schools administer the Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) Program?
No. Charter schools are required by California Education Code Section 47605(c) [http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/codes_displaySection.xhtml?lawCode=EDC§ionNum=47605.] to administer these tests following the same procedures and requirements for test administration as required of non charter schools.
During initial enrollment in a California public school, parents or guardians of all students are required to complete a Home Language Survey (HLS) comprised of four questions. When the HLS indicates a language other than English, the student’s English language proficiency is determined using the California English Language Development Test which is administered within 30 calendar days of school enrollment. During initial enrollment, students identified as English learners are further assessed in their primary language to determine proficiencies in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Results of each student’s assessments are to be sent to parents or guardians in a language they understand. Final results of students’ designation and English proficiencies are reported annually to the state for each school on the school’s language census.