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Assessment Spotlight, Issue 229

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) email update, April 28, 2023.

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. .

Close of the ELPAC Testing Window Quickly Approaching!

The end of the ELPAC testing window is rapidly approaching on May 31. As of April 25, 60 percent of eligible students for the Summative Alternate ELPAC and 66 percent of eligible students for the Summative ELPAC completed testing in all domains. A reminder that testing all eligible English learner students is a state and federal requirement to ensure English learner students receive the necessary programs and services. For any questions associated with administering the ELPAC, feel free to reach out to your local educational agency’s (LEA’s) Success Agent External link opens in new window or tab. .

Focus on Test Security—Pause Rules and Grace Period Extensions

This week, our focus on test security turns to pause rules and grace period extensions. Pause rules only apply to the computer adaptive portion of the Smarter Balanced summative assessments for English language arts/literacy (ELA) and mathematics as well as to the California Science Assessment (CAST) discrete questions, the Initial ELPAC, and the Summative ELPAC (Listening and Reading domains only). If a test with a pause rule is paused for more than 20 minutes, the following will apply:

  • The student will be required to log back on to the student interface, using the student’s logon information (name, Statewide Student Identifier, and test session).

  • The student will be presented with the page containing the question(s) the student was working on when the assessment was paused if the page contains at least one question to which there is not a complete response. If, however, all questions on the page were answered, the student will be presented with the next page.

  • The student will not be permitted to review or change any previously answered questions, even if they are marked for review (with the exception of questions on a page that contains at least one question to which there is not a complete response).

  • Any highlighted text will be saved regardless of how long the test is paused; notes entered on the digital notepad, however, will not be saved. Global Notes, which are available only for ELA performance tasks (PTs), are retained from segment to segment and after pauses of more than 20 minutes.

A grace period extension (GPE) allows the student to review previously answered questions upon logging back on to the assessment after the expiration of the pause rule. A GPE is only for situations in which a test is paused for longer than 20 minutes due to circumstances beyond the control of the test administrator or student, such as a Wi-Fi or power outage, fire, or emergency drills. A GPE will not be granted for student breaks, such as recess or lunch lasting for more than 20 minutes or for students who misunderstood the pause rules.

If a testing site experiences a technical issue and wishes to submit a GPE request, the site should stop the student(s) from continuing the test, notify the site coordinator, and not have the student(s) move beyond the current question until the Security and Test Administration Incident Reporting System (STAIRS) case is submitted and the GPE appeal request is approved.

The pause rule does not apply to the Smarter Balanced PTs, CAST PTs, California Alternate Assessments (CAAs), Initial and Summative ELPAC (Speaking and Writing domains), and the Initial and Summative Alternate ELPAC. If these assessments are paused for more than 20 minutes, the student can return to the current section and continue entering responses.

Find more information in the Online Test Administration Manual External link opens in new window or tab. or the Pause Rules for AssessmentsExternal link opens in new window or tab. (PDF) web document.

California High School Equivalency Program

The May 3, 2023, Informational webinar has been canceled. All registrants are encouraged to sign up for one of our August in-person Equivalency and Proficiency Convenings. To register visit the High School Equivalency (HSE) Summer Convenings web page External link opens in new window or tab. .

California High School Proficiency Examination

End-of-Test Series Notification: The California High School Proficiency Examination (CHSPE) test series is coming to an end!

This is the last opportunity for students to take the current paper-pencil CHSPE test. Registration for this administration will close on May 26. The testing window will run from June 13 through June 18.

If students have not passed both sections of the CHSPE, they will need to begin again once the new Proficiency Program examinations are offered this fall.

After the last CHSPE administration this summer, the Proficiency Program will transition to using the California State Board of Education approved high school equivalency vendors’ tests of language arts and mathematics to measure a student’s proficiency in basic skills taught in public high schools. More details to come.

Please share this message 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 California Department of Education (CDE) Assessment Spotlight web page to find previous issues.

Questions:   California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress Office | | 916-445-8765
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, May 03, 2023
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