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CAASPP Update, Issue 230

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update, November 1, 2017.

Focusing on the CAASPP System, including the Smarter Balanced assessments—a major component of CAASPP—and the California Alternate Assessments and science assessments.

Score Big with Hand Scoring Resources

In September and October, the California Department of Education (CDE), in partnership with Educational Testing Service and WestEd, conducted Interim Assessment Hand Scoring Workshops throughout the state. The workshops were designed to strengthen the evaluation of student work and promote the use of student results to inform teaching and learning.

Resources to assist local educational agencies (LEAs) in conducting these workshops locally are now available on the Help page of the Test Operations Management System (TOMS) External link opens in new window or tab., under the “Interim Assessment Hand Scoring” tab. For both of the hand scoring workshops—English language arts/literacy and mathematics—the resources include:

  • PowerPoint presentation
  • Facilitator guide with speaker notes
  • Hand scoring training materials

North-South Webcast Video Presentations Now Posted

The Webcast video presentations from the 2017 North-South Meeting, held this fall in Sacramento and Ontario, are now available on the CDE 2017 Assessment and Accountability Info Meeting web page. The presentations provide new information on a number of important and timely topics related to CAASPP.

This Month’s Featured Digital Library Resource: “Ordering Snacks”

November’s featured Digital Library resource is “Ordering Snacks External link opens in new window or tab.,” (Digital Library account required) a mathematics activity designed for grade nine students to develop mathematics skills alongside effective collaboration and communication techniques to solve systems of equations in three or more variables. “Ordering Snacks” includes a lesson plan that outlines various instructional procedures for the activity and highlights some potential areas to embed specific formative assessment attributes to address student needs. Teachers may find its versatility useful in planning instruction for students in other grades.

In the activity, students communicate sets of clues in a small group. Their effectiveness at verbally sharing the increasingly complex information engages them with arithmetic, algebra, written equations, variable definition, and, ultimately, the solving of systems of equations. While the students navigate the problems, the teacher can elicit evidence of learning and embed formative assessment strategies to determine next steps.

“Ordering Snacks” is one of several Digital Library resources on the CDE High School—Algebra and Functions web page as part of the Instructional Learning Series, a collection of Digital Library playlists created by the CDE. The series organizes instructional resources for teachers, addressing Common Core State Standards and Smarter Balanced assessment targets associated with the content of various Smarter Balanced Interim Assessment Blocks.

Embedded Performance Tasks for the California Alternate Assessment for Science!

The embedded performance tasks for the California Alternate Assessment (CAA) for Science are now available! They are posted in TOMS and can be accessed as follows:

  1. Log on to TOMS.
  2. Select the “Help” icon, located in the upper-right corner.
  3. Select the “CAA Secure Materials” tab, which is where the embedded performance tasks can be found, contained in the Directions for Administrations.

The early availability of the performance tasks will allow for instruction before the actual assessment. Note that the Data Entry Interface will be available in January.

Science Test Assignments Open Next Month

Reminder: All grade twelve students will automatically be assigned the California Science Test (CAST). The following students must have a science test assigned to them through TOMS:

  • Students who are to take the CAA for Science
  • Students who are to take a science test in grade ten or eleven, whether the CAST or the CAA for Science

Test coordinators will be able to make those assignments starting December 2.

2016–17: LEAs Exceeding 1 Percent Threshold

Now available on the CDE CAASPP reporting site External link opens in new window or tab., posted with the assessment results, are the lists of LEAs that reported having exceeding the 1 percent threshold in 2016‒17. The new 1 Percent Justification form will be available soon for LEAs that expect they will exceed the 1 percent threshold for the 2017‒18 school year.

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 e-mail list, send a blank message to subscribe-caaspp@mlist.cde.ca.gov. Are you a new subscriber? Visit the CDE CAASPP Update web page to find previous issues.

Questions:   California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress Office | caaspp@cde.ca.gov | 916-445-8765
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, October 10, 2018
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