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Assessment Spotlight, Issue 116

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) email update, November 30, 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. For questions related to test administration, coordination, and trainings, visit the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab. and the ELPAC website External link opens in new window or tab..

Join Us: Interim Assessment Hand Scoring Workshops for Teachers

Spots are filling fast, but openings are still available for the online 2020–21 Interim Assessment Hand Scoring Workshop for Teachers—including one of the December workshops focusing on mathematics. Workshop participants will engage in the process of hand scoring Smarter Balanced assessment items as a way to deepen their understanding of the content standards, strengthen their evaluation of student work, and promote the use of student results to inform teaching and learning.

For details and to register, go the 2020–21 Interim Assessment Hand Scoring Workshop web page External link opens in new window or tab.. For further information, contact Nikki Antonovich, Coordinator, Sacramento County Office of Education, by email at

New! Tool for Understanding How Smarter Balanced Scores Written Responses

Have you ever wondered how student writing on the Smarter Balanced assessments is evaluated and scored? Learn all about it with the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium’s newly available Smarter Annotated Response Tool (SmART). SmART is designed to help educators and others interested in better understanding the rubrics used to score students’ written responses to Smarter Balanced assessment items, this online tool supports learning in a number of ways, including the following:

  • Showing examples of student writing, scoring annotations, and rubrics
  • Highlighting what to look for when reviewing student responses
  • Providing a professional learning resource for the scoring of student writing samples

The Smarter Annotated Response Tool External link opens in new window or tab. is available publicly for anyone to use and is an excellent tool for educators and parents to use for supporting student writing during distance learning. Check it out today!


In light of the various challenges created by the coronavirus 2019 pandemic as well as the priority placed on enhancing the ability of the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System (CALPADS) to handle significantly increased data loads, the California Department of Education (CDE) has decided to delay the implementation of the Student Test Setting file in which local educational agencies (LEAs) would submit all student test settings (accommodations and designated supports) to CALPADS instead of loading them directly in the Test Operations Management System (TOMS). The existing process for loading student test settings into TOMS will continue. The TOMS test settings upload features and the Individual Student Assessment Accessibility Profile Tool will remain supported for the 2021–22 testing year.

Summative ELPAC Virtual Office Hours: Date Change Next Month

Please note that the December 3, 2020, date for Summative ELPAC Virtual Office Hours has been moved to December 2 to allow for coordinators to attend the Pretest Workshop. As a reminder, the purpose of this office hour is to answer your questions about test administration. Questions can be submitted through the Moodle Training Site in advance, and the Zoom link also can be accessed within Moodle. We hope you can join us!

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: Monday, December 7, 2020
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