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Assessment Spotlight, Issue 44

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) email update, May 8, 2019.

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

Focus on Test Security—Invalidation Appeal FAQs

This week, our focus on test security takes the form of frequently asked questions about invalidation appeals:

Q:  Do all tests that are invalidated through an appeal request still result in scores being reported for the student?

A:  Invalidated tests will be scored, and the scores will be provided on the Student Score Report—with caution language that an irregularity occurred. Students who have accessed both the computer adaptive test and the performance task in a subject area will be counted in the calculation of the school’s participation rate for accountability purposes as having participated.

Q:  What does the caution language on the Student Score Report say when a test is invalidated?

A:  “[First name]’s scores should be used with caution as the test was administered under conditions that may not represent [first name]’s achievement.”

Q:  How will an invalidation appeal impact the local educational agency’s (LEA’s) “distance from met” for accountability purposes?

A:  For accountability purposes, a student whose test is invalidated will be assigned the lowest obtainable scale score for that grade level and subject for the purpose of calculating the accountability concept of “distance from met.”

Q:  How can I avoid unintended invalidations?

A:  Do not report an issue in the Security and Test Administration Incident Reporting System (STAIRS) until you have confirmed that the situation requires an invalidation for all students included in the STAIRS report. Site coordinators who are unsure whether an issue requires an invalidation should confirm with their LEA coordinator before reporting the incident in STAIRS. Any LEA coordinator needing assistance can contact the California Technical Assistance Center.

Remember, if the LEA chooses to allow a student who is found to be cheating to complete the test, the LEA should wait to report the case in STAIRS and request the invalidation appeal until the student has completed testing.

Q:  Can I reverse an accidental invalidation that was unintentionally submitted in STAIRS?

A:  Because reversal of accidental invalidations is a manual process for the testing contractor, invalidate reversals may compromise the accuracy of a student’s assessment results. The California Department of Education will reverse an invalidation only if the LEA coordinator agrees to assume the risk involved with the invalidation reversal process. Test site coordinators should contact their LEA coordinator if they think an accidental invalidation reversal is required.

Did we answer your question? If not, please refer to the CAASPP Security Incidents and Appeals Procedure Guide External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF) for more information on test security.

Spotlight on Accessibility

Scribe is a non-embedded designated support for most CAASPP tests, and a non-embedded accommodation for the English language arts/literacy (ELA) performance task full write. Students dictate their responses to a person—a scribe—who records verbatim what they dictate. The scribe must follow the “Scribing Protocol for Smarter Balanced Assessments,” which can be found on the Smarter Balanced website External link opens in new window or tab..

The scribe designated support is available to students when it has been determined for use by an educator or team of educators (with parent/guardian and student input, as appropriate) or specified in the student’s individualized education program (IEP) or Section 504 plan.

The scribe accommodation for the ELA performance task full write is appropriate for students who have documented significant motor or processing difficulties or who have had a recent injury (such as a broken hand or arm) that makes it difficult to produce responses. The scribe accommodation must be specified in the student’s IEP or Section 504 plan.

More information on the use of the scribe resource can be found in Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium: Usability, Accessibility, and Accommodations Guidelines, available on the Smarter Balanced website External link opens in new window or tab., and the Accessibility Guide for CAASPP Online Testing, available on the CAASPP Portal External link opens in new window or tab..

Please share this email with any educators in your local educational agency who would be interested in or benefit from this information. To join the email list, send a blank 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: Thursday, May 9, 2019
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