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Assessment Spotlight, Issue 245

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) email update, September 8, 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. .

2023 California Assessment Conference: Register to Learn from Colleagues Across the State

There is still time to register for the 2023 California Assessment Conference (CAC) and connect with fellow classroom educators. With the theme of Charting the Course Between Instruction and Assessment, the 2023 CAC sessions will focus on the use of assessment tools, resources, and data to support classroom instruction. Learn how teachers, schools and districts across California use these tools, resources, and results to improve teaching and learning. Register today to secure your spot for October 9–10, 2023, in Sacramento, California.

For more information about the conference sessions and to register visit the CAC website External link opens in new window or tab. .

New Coordinator Training Webinar #3 – Student Practice

Calling all local educational agency (LEA) CAASPP and ELPAC coordinators who are new to their role or want a refresher!

Please note that no new information or updates about systems for the current year will happen in these trainings. They are only a review of coordinator tasks for new coordinators.

The third New Coordinator Webinar of the 2023–24 series will take place on October 19, 2023, from 3 to 4 p.m. Register External link opens in new window or tab. for this webinar to take a deep dive into student practice.

Coming Soon! Interim Assessments for the English Language Proficiency Assessments for California and the California Science Test

The ELPAC and California Science Test (CAST) Interim Assessments will soon become available to LEAs. The ELPAC and CAST Interim Assessments will join the Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments for English language arts/literacy and mathematics as state-provided interim assessments.

Interim assessments are one component of the California Assessment System. The interim assessments are optional and can be administered to students in either a standardized (e.g., benchmark) or nonstandardized (e.g., formative) manner, or used by school and district staff for professional development. The purpose of the interim assessments is to provide teachers and administrators with data they can use to support teaching and learning.

The ELPAC and CAST Interim Assessments will be made available to LEAs using their secure access Test Operation Management System (TOMS) login credentials according to the following timeline:

  • September 19, 2023—Preview Access for Educators
    • Interim assessment forms will be available in the Interim Assessment Viewing System.
    • Secure hand scoring materials and answer keys will be available in TOMS.
  • Late October 2023—Administration and Results Access
    • Interim assessment forms will be available in the Test Delivery System for administering to students.
    • Items requiring hand scoring will be available in either the Teacher Hand Scoring System or the Data Entry Interface.
    • Once hand scoring is completed, the following data will be available in the California Educator Reporting System (CERS):
      • Overall scale scores
      • Performance levels
      • Custom aggregate reports
      • Key and distractor analysis
  • Late January 2024
    • Test items and student responses will be viewable in CERS.
  • Late July 2024
    • Individual Student Reports (ISRs) will be available in CERS.

Additional information, including a listing of all interim assessments, is provided in the 2023–24 Interim Assessments At-a-Glance (PDF) and the 2023–24 Interim Assessments by Grade (PDF) documents.

Introducing the New Interim Assessments Webinars

To assist LEA staff—including coordinators, administrators, and teachers—in understanding the content of the new ELPAC and CAST Interim Assessments and resources available to support their use, the California Department of Education (CDE) will offer the following two webinars:

  • Introducing the ELPAC Interim Assessments
    • Thursday, September 26, 2023, 3:30 to 4:45 p.m.
  • Introducing the CAST Interim Assessments
    • Thursday, October 3, 2023, 3:30 to 4:45 p.m.

These 75-minute webinars will cover interim assessment basics for each program such as the forms available by grade level/grade span, content covered, item types, ways in which the assessments can be used, and resources available to support understanding and use.

Registration: Register now for the Introducing the ELPAC and CAST Interim Assessments webinars External link opens in new window or tab. .

If you have any questions about these webinars, please contact Nikki Antonovich, Coordinator, Sacramento County Office of Education by email at

September’s Featured Resource inToolsforTeachers—What A Relief!

Seventh grade teachers can use this month’s Tools for Teachers science instructional resource, What a Relief! External link opens in new window or tab. (account required), to build upon students’ skills in using and interpreting data for effective mitigation of potential natural disasters. This phenomenon-based lesson, aligned with the California Next Generation Science Standards, focuses on the Science and Engineering Practice of Analyzing and Interpreting Data and the Crosscutting Concept of Patterns.

In this lesson, students are given data from past geohazards to identify patterns. Students are then asked to use this data to help inform effective mitigation technology for both predictable and unpredictable events. Activities include the use of maps of the Santa Barbara area to compare and contrast as well as student prompts to provide justifications for their solutions.

Through the use of existing data, game cards, and a slide deck, students will have supports to access content in an innovative fashion. Suggestions for native language use, formative assessment strategies, and accessibility resources are available, as well as information regarding assistive technology. Also included are “things to consider” as teachers plan for the delivery of this Earth and Space Sciences lesson.

To view this and other instructional resources, LEA staff need a Tools for Teachers account which can be obtained either through self-registration, described in the flyer How to Self-Register for Tools for Teachers (PDF), or through their LEA CAASPP coordinator.

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, September 11, 2023
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