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CAASPP Update, Issue 117

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update, sent out on September 2, 2015.

The California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) Update, from the California Department of Education (CDE), is a regular e-mail for K–12 educators, including testing coordinators, that focuses primarily on the Smarter  Balanced assessments, which are a major component of the CAASPP system. CAASPP also includes the California Alternate Assessments and science assessments. Please forward this e-mail to any educators in your local educational agency (LEA) who would be interested in or benefit from this information.

In this issue:
  • 2015–16 CAASPP Institutes: A Professional Learning Opportunity
  • Test Operations Management System (TOMS) Downtime
  • Summative Assessments
  • CALPADS Downtime and Interim Assessment Administration
  • Digital Library—Reminder: September 10 Webcast
  • Digital Library Featured Resource
2015–16 CAASPP Institutes: A Professional Learning Opportunity

To further support implementation of the CAASPP system, the CDE has partnered with the Sacramento County Office of Education to conduct regional CAASPP Institutes for LEA teams during the 2015–16 school year. The CAASPP Institutes will offer participants strategies for using the CAASPP system to improve teaching and learning, opportunities for cross-LEA sharing and collaboration, and guided team planning time.

Each CAASPP Institute will be offered regionally and will consist of two live sessions: Session 1, which will take place in October or November; and Session 2, which will take place in February or March. There will be 14 regional Institutes for school district and school teams and two Train the Trainer Institutes for county office of education teams. For further information, including dates, locations, and directions for applying to attend, visit the CDE CAASPP website. The application window will close on Friday, September 18.

Test Operations Management System (TOMS) Downtime

Please note that TOMS will be offline October 1–14. During the downtime, LEAs will not be able to download student data files or score report PDFs; access the Online Reporting System, interim assessments, or hand scoring for interim assessments; add/delete users; or view completion status for interim assessments. We anticipate the system to be back online Thursday, October 15, with new system enhancements that will make 2015–16 version of TOMS easier to use. 

Summative Assessments

The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium: Usability, Accessibility, and Accommodations Guidelines External link opens in new window or tab. (UAAG) was updated on August 25, 2015. The UAAG has revised the recommendations for using the separate setting, non-embedded designated support. This support now includes students’ use of a device requiring voicing (e.g., Whisper Phone).

In the UAAG Frequently Asked Questions section (see question 17), Smarter Balanced has outlined the process and timeline for making changes to the UAAG annually.

Reminder: All student condition codes must be entered into TOMS by September 15, 2015. Instructions for using condition codes in the 2014–15 version of TOMS can be found on the CAASPP Test Operations Management System web page External link opens in new window or tab..

CALPADS Downtime and Interim Assessment Administration

The California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System (CALPADS) is scheduled for downtime from Monday, September 7, at 5 p.m. through Monday, September 14, at 6 a.m.

Please note that during this downtime, LEAs may administer the interim assessments to students whose information was listed in CALPADS for the LEA before the downtime. However, information on new students and revisions to students’ demographic data (including grade and school) will not be reflected in TOMS during this downtime.

Digital Library—Reminder: September 10 Webcast

On Thursday, September 10, from 1 to 2 p.m., Educational Testing Service and the CDE will present the Smarter Balanced Digital Library Webcast. The Webcast will include such information as instructions for accessing and navigating the Digital Library and available formative assessment resources. In addition, the presenters will respond to questions from viewers. The Webcast can be viewed, and questions can be submitted, on the CAASPP Webcast web page External link opens in new window or tab. . No preregistration or logon account is required. Materials and the archive of this Webcast will be available in the “Webcast Archives” section of the CAASPP Training Videos and Resources web page External link opens in new window or tab..

Digital Library Featured Resource

The Smarter Balanced Digital Library resource Supporting Ideas & Language in Text Analysis: Formative Assessment with a Focus on Language in English Language Arts, Grades 3–5 External link opens in new window or tab. is a video module focusing on language and content in student summarizations of grade-level text. This resource focuses on instruction for English learners (ELs), but can be used to guide instruction for all students. It offers a deep explanation of the formative assessment process by demonstrating how an educator clarifies intended learning, elicits evidence, interprets evidence, and acts on evidence. In addition, it looks at language and content for ELs by facilitating and modeling the reading of content and the summarizing of that content verbally or in writing. While the content standards highlighted in the module are specific to grade three, this module is appropriate for any grade level when addressing textual analysis, summarization, synthesizing, and recounting grade-level texts, both orally and in writing. Educators are encouraged to explore other resources in the Smarter Balanced Digital Library External link opens in new window or tab., which includes over 2,600 formative assessment resources.

Additional Information

To join the CDE CAASPP email list, send a blank message to subscribe-caaspp@mlist.cde.ca.gov. Additional information about the CAASPP system and Smarter Balanced activities is available on the CDE CAASPP System web page. Questions about the CAASPP system assessments should be directed by phone to 800-955-2954, or by e-mail to CalTAC@ets.org. Questions about the Digital Library should be directed to the Digital Library Help Desk by phone at 855-631-1510 or by email at CalTAC@ets.org.

Questions:   California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress | caaspp@cde.ca.gov | 916-445-8765
Last Reviewed: Friday, September 14, 2018
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