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CAASPP Update, Issue 86

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update sent out on January 28, 2015.

The California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) Update, from the California Department of Education (CDE), is a regular e-mail that focuses primarily on the Smarter Balanced assessments, which are a major component of the CAASPP system. Please forward this e-mail to any educators in your local educational agency (LEA) who would be interested in or benefit from this information.

Summative Assessments

In preparing for the summative administration, be sure to regularly visit the CDE CAASPP System web page and CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab. for new and updated resources and information. Check out these key Web sites and bookmark them on your browser today!

The in-person online Test Administration Workshops began on January 26, 2015, and continue through February 13, 2015, in locations throughout the state. Each LEA CAASPP coordinator and one more staff person (e.g., technology coordinator) from the LEA may sign up to attend an in-person Online Test Administration Workshop External link opens in new window or tab.. In addition, today’s 1 p.m. live Webcast of the Test Administration Workshop will be accessible on the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab. and will be archived on the same Web site for later viewing.

The Smarter Balanced summative and interim assessments include both embedded (delivered digitally on computer platform) and non-embedded accessibility supports. These accessibility supports provide access for students with different needs. Several resources are available to assist LEA staff in identifying the most appropriate accessibility resources for students and configuring them in the Test Operations Management System (TOMS) for the summative and interim assessments. To learn more, see:

Interim Assessments

Today is the day! LEA CAASPP coordinators should expect to receive an e-mail today announcing the much-anticipated release of the interim comprehensive assessments (ICAs), select interim assessment blocks (IABs), and the Interim Handscoring Module. Interim assessment student reports will be available in late February. Learn all about these new resources by viewing the archived Webcasts, Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments (Parts I and II). These are available for viewing on the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab., under the “Training” tab.

Digital Library

The Smarter Balanced Digital Library is an outstanding and timely collection of online formative assessment resources for K–12 teachers. Registered users of the Digital Library can log on by going to the Smarter Balanced Single Sign On web page External link opens in new window or tab.. Teachers who are not yet registered should check with their LEA CAASPP coordinator. Excellent resources that serve as good introductions to the Digital Library include:

  • Using Common Formative Assessments to Reflect on Teacher Practices, which is a nine-minute video.
  • Learning Through Mistakes in Math: My Favorite No! which is a six-minute video in which the teacher uses student mistakes to quickly clarify concepts.
Secure Browser

The iOS8 secure browser is now available for download from the Apple Store. Last year’s browsers must be uninstalled and new versions installed in preparation for the 2015 administration of the Smarter Balanced summative assessments. For information about all secure browsers, go to the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab., and then select the “Secure Browsers” button.

California Alternate Assessment

On January 16, 2015, the Alternate Performance Assessments for California (APAC) was announced to be the successor to the California Alternate Performance Assessment for English language/literacy arts (ELA) and for mathematics. Upon further consideration, the name has been changed to the California Alternate Assessment (CAA) to eliminate the word “performance.” The CAA, based on alternate achievement standards that are linked to the state academic content standards for ELA and mathematics, will be field-tested this spring from April 15 through June 10.

  • Levels of complexity. Students will experience items at all levels of complexity during the field test in order to gather data on how the items perform. The purpose will be to find out how the items perform across the range of student academic performance. Students may perform better on some items than others because some items will be more difficult. Please provide this information about item complexity before the field test in order to manage test administrators’ expectations.
  • Student-level data. Because this is a field test to gather item-level data, no student or school level results will be provided.
  • Test accommodations. Accommodations noted in a student’s individualized education program or Section 504 plan that are regularly used during instruction and for state testing may be used during the CAA field test. These accommodations, as appropriate for any pupil taking the CAA, will be included through the TOMS registration system as the CAA field test will be delivered on the same technology platform as Smarter Balanced assessments. However, there will not be a paper-and-pencil version, a braille version, or support for text-to-speech during the CAA field test.
Additional Information

To join the CDE CAASPP/Smarter Balanced e-mail list, send a blank e-mail to subscribe-caaspp@mlist.cde.ca.gov. Additional information about CAASPP System and Smarter Balanced activities is available on the CDE CAASPP System web page.

Questions about the CAASPP System assessments should be directed by phone to CalTAC at 800-955-2954 or by e-mail to CalTAC@ets.org. Questions about the Digital Library, including how to register new users, should be directed by phone to the Digital Library Help Desk at 855-631-1510 or by e-mail to CalTAC@ets.org.

Questions:   California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress Office | caaspp@cde.ca.gov | 916-445-8765
Last Reviewed: Thursday, August 9, 2018
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