Preliminary Indicator Communication Toolkit
California is committed to developing an alternate science assessment that is derived from the California Next Generation Science Standards (CA NGSS). The California Alternate Assessment (CAA) for Science is designed for students with the most significant cognitive disabilities and measures what students know and can do in science. The CAA for Science is part of the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System.
For the 2020–21 CAA for Science results, California reported preliminary indicators (i.e., consisting of a percent correct and an indicator category). These preliminary indicators are the same as those used for reporting results for the 2017–18 field test through the 2019–2020 administrations. Eligible students in grades five and eight and high school (i.e., grade ten, eleven, or twelve) who submitted all four embedded performance tasks received preliminary indicators. High school students who attempted all four of the embedded performance tasks for the CAA for Science in 2020–21 have satisfied the federal and state science testing requirement for high school.
Local educational agencies (LEAs) received a downloadable student score extract file in the Test Operations Management System with preliminary indicators for those students who submitted all four of the CAA for Science performance tasks. For those students who started testing but did not attempt all four performance tasks, the student score extract file contains the number of items attempted. LEAs have been encouraged to communicate the individual student preliminary indicator results to parents and guardians in a manner best suited to the local context.
The three CAA for Science preliminary indicator categories are described in the table below. Caution should be used when interpreting these preliminary indicator results, given that the results reflect an assessment that was not yet operational. The first operational year for the CAA will be in the 2021-22 administration.
Preliminary Indicator Categories for the CAA for Science
|Student performance suggests a considerable understanding of the CA NGSS.|
|Student performance suggests a moderate understanding of the CA NGSS.|
|Student performance suggests a limited understanding of the CA NGSS.|
The following resources provide some key messages about the 2020–21 preliminary indicators, reporting requirements, and frequently asked questions:
- Preliminary Indicators—CAA for Science Key Messages provides important information about the CAA for Science and reporting the preliminary indicator results to LEAs, schools, and other stakeholders.
- Reporting the CAA for Science Results Timeline provides LEAs, schools, and other stakeholders with information about releasing the science assessment results to parents/guardians and the public.
- CAA for Science Transition to Operational Timeline provides information about reporting student science assessment results for the 2020–21 and 2021–22 school years.
- Frequently Asked Questions provides answers to questions LEAs, schools, and stakeholders may have about reporting and releasing the 2020–21 preliminary indicators for the CAA for Science.
The following letter templates can be used to communicate individual student score information to parents and guardians for the 2020–21 CAA for Science preliminary indicator results:
- Template for parent/guardian letter for CAA for Science (DOCX)
- CAA para Ciencias de Indicador Preliminaro – Carta de Español (DOCX)