Skip to main content
California Department of Education Logo

Assessment Spotlight, Issue 106

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) email update, September 4, 2020.

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

Test Administration Guidelines Now Available!

Test administration guidelines for the administration of the fall Initial ELPAC and the optional administration of the Summative ELPAC have been posted. Complete descriptions of the different options for administering the assessments, communications for stakeholders, directions for local educational agencies (LEAs), test examiners, parents/guardians, and students are located on the ELPAC Important News and Updates web page External link opens in new window or tab..

Please note that additional information regarding the kindergarten through grade two Writing domain Answer Books is located on the home page for Fall Administrations External link opens in new window or tab..

Direct questions about the fall administrations to CalTAC, by phone at 800-955-2954 or by email at

Attention LEA Staff Trainers: Register for the 2020 Interim and Formative Assessment Training Series

Register now for the 2020 Interim and Formative Assessment Training Series, “Implementing a Comprehensive Assessment System to Improve Learning,” coming in October! This series has been developed using a “train-the-trainers" model to assist LEA staff trainers in the presentation of materials to the educators at their sites or districts.

Participants will learn how to train others locally on the following topics:

  • Module 1: Assessment literacy
  • Module 2: Performance task design
  • Module 3: Scoring performance tasks
  • Module 4: Claims and targets
  • Module 5: Hand scoring practice
  • Module 6: Formative assessment process and Tools for Teachers
  • Module 7: Interim assessment resources and systems

This training is for LEA staff trainers. More information, including webinar dates and the link to register, can be found in the September 1, 2020, email External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF) from the California Technical Assistance Center, which is posted on the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab..

Questions regarding this training series should be directed to Educational Testing Service (ETS) by email at

New Resource! Smarter Balanced Interim Assessment Item Portal

The Smarter Balanced Interim Assessment Item Portal (IAIP) External link opens in new window or tab. is a new tool that allows educators to use interim assessment items in more flexible ways than ever before to support the use of the formative assessment process. Educators can select and assemble interim assessment items to better align with the sequence of their instruction.

IAIP search filters allow educators to easily find, access, and print relevant interim assessment items for use in both remote teaching and traditional classroom settings. The filters allow users to search for items by:

  • Grade
  • Subject
  • Test name
  • Claim
  • Target
  • Content standard

It is important to remember that interim assessment items are copyrighted, and it is prohibited for any items to be uploaded or posted to third-party websites and applications.

An illustrated Interim Assessment Item Portal flyer External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF) is available on the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab. to promote the use of this new tool!

LEA Coordinators: The CDE Wants to Hear from You!

The California Department of Education (CDE) is launching its annual LEA coordinator survey next week, on September 8. We hope you will take a few minutes to tell us about the resources and training you need to be successful in your role as an LEA coordinator—CAASPP, ELPAC or both! This brief survey will ask you about your awareness and use of several existing resources and for your suggestions for additional resources.

This survey is part of the CDE’s ongoing effort to support the important work of LEA coordinators. Keep an eye on your inbox on September 8 for a link to the survey!

Success! At-Home HSE Testing with Online Proctoring

When California schools were physically closed this past March because of COVID-19, so were the in-person high school equivalency (HSE) testing centers. This left many students in a difficult situation—how to complete their HSE tests! These tests provide a critical pathway for students who are unable to complete high school graduation requirements.

In response to the shutting down of the testing centers, GED Testing Services and ETS created online, at-home testing solutions. These solutions, which use online proctoring, are available to test takers who are at least eighteen years of age.

Since the time at-home HSE testing was first made available, nearly 5,000 test sessions have been completed in California. When surveyed, the test takers report a 99.7 percent proctor satisfaction rate. The following quotes from recent test takers are typical of the feedback received to date:

  • The people were nice! I will let my teachers and other class mates know about my experience with your services.
  • Thank you for making this happen and for letting this be available. Thank you.
  • My proctor was so good. fast and easy setup, and I went right to my exam with no troubles.
  • Easy to use.
  • Will use again!
  • Thank you for providing this service during our COVID-19 pandemic.

To learn more about at-home HSE testing and online proctoring, please visit the Online GED web page External link opens in new window or tab. and the ETS HiSET web page External link opens in new window or tab. .

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: Tuesday, September 15, 2020
Recently Posted in Testing