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Assessment Spotlight, Issue 96

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) email update, June 19, 2020.

Focusing on the CAASPP System and English Language Proficiency Assessments of California (ELPAC)—and including, when timely, updates on California’s other statewide assessments.

COVID-19 and Assessments: FAQs

The California Department of Education (CDE) Assessment Division received several questions during the April 2020 CDE Update webinar External link opens in new window or tab.. Staff from the CAASPP, ELPAC, Physical Fitness Test, California High School Proficiency Examination, and High School Equivalency Tests programs have collaboratively answered those questions and created a COVID-19 Assessment FAQ web page. As more information becomes available, this web page will be updated.

 Low-Cost Professional Development at the 2020 Virtual CAC

Coming this October 6 and 7, the 2020 Virtual California Assessment Conference (CAC) is an important, low-cost professional development opportunity for classroom educators whose schools and districts are facing unprecedented budget cuts in the 2020–21 school year. With its low registration cost and offering the comfort of participation from your home or office, the 2020 Virtual CAC will provide high-quality, customizable professional learning on a budget.

Find more information about this conference on the CAC website External link opens in new window or tab.. Any questions can be emailed to, and a response will be sent within two business days.

We understand the importance of professional development and are excited to offer this opportunity to California educators. We look forward to seeing you at the conference!

Initial ELPAC: Answers to Your Questions

This week, to assist local educational agencies (LEAs) with their questions about the Initial ELPAC, we are providing a section for questions and answers about this assessment:

Q: Must all test examiners complete the Initial ELPAC administration and scoring training in the Moodle Training Site by August 1, 2020?

A: Only the LEA ELPAC coordinator or designated trainer need to complete certification by August 1. Test examiners can continue to complete Initial ELPAC training prior to administering the computer-based Initial ELPAC.

Q: How do we determine who takes the paper–pencil Initial ELPAC in July and who takes the computer-based Initial ELPAC when it begins on August 20?

A: Determining whether to administer the paper–pencil or computer-based Initial ELPAC is at the LEA’s discretion and should be based on when students physically return to school; noting that LEAs have 30 days from the first day of classes to administer, score, and report results to parents.

Q: Is there a destruction window for the 2019–2020 Initial ELPAC materials?

A: Yes, the 2019–2020 destruction of materials deadline is September 20, 2020. LEAs can begin securely destroying materials now or may wait to send them to the contractor, Educational Testing Service, beginning August 20, 2020.

Q: Is the Teacher Hand Scoring System (THSS) the same as the Data Entry Interface (DEI)?

A: The THSS will be used by test examiners and other trained LEA staff to score students’ computer-based Initial ELPAC Writing responses for students in grades three through twelve. The DEI is used for LEA staff to enter students’ Speaking and Writing responses and scores for students in kindergarten through grade two. Listening and Reading responses are captured and scored through the Test Delivery System during the computer-based administration.

2018–19 CAST Results Now Available in CERS

The 2018–19California Science Test (CAST) results are available now in the California Educator Reporting System (CERS). LEA staff who have Test Operations Management System logon credentials can enter CERS through the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab. to access these results.Testing coordinators will need to ensure that student groups have been assigned to their educators so classroom educators can access their students’ CAST results.

Please share this email with any educators in your LEA who would be interested in or benefit from this information. To join the email list, send a blank email message to Are you a new subscriber? Visit the CDE Assessment Spotlight web page to find previous issues.

Questions:   California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress Office | | 916-445-8765
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, July 1, 2020
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