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CAASPP Update, Issue 250

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update, April 4, 2018.

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

Cross Tabulations for Statewide Smarter Balanced Results

By request from California educators and the public, additional cross tabulations of results for the Smarter Balanced English language arts/literacy (ELA) and mathematics assessments are available on the California Department of Education (CDE) CAASPP Results Web site. These additional cross tabulations, for the state as a whole, by grade, are as follows:

Gender, by:

  • Ethnicity
  • English language fluency
  • Economic status
  • Migrant status
  • Disability status

Ethnicity, by:

  • English language fluency
  • Economic status
  • Migrant status
  • Disability status

Save the Date! 2018 North-South Assessment and Accountability Information Meeting

The 2018 North-South Assessment and Accountability Information Meeting, hosted by the CDE, will provide CAASPP and English Language Proficiency Assessments for California coordinators with the latest information and updates on California's assessment and accountability systems.

Save the date and join us at one of the following locations:

  • North
    Thursday, September 20
    DoubleTree by Hilton Sacramento
    2001 Point West Way
    Sacramento, CA 95815

  • South
    Thursday, September 27
    DoubleTree by Hilton Ontario
    222 North Vineyard Avenue
    Ontario, CA 91764

Registration will open in May—watch for the announcement, coming soon!

April’s Featured Digital Library Resource—Constructing Scientific Explanations Using Defining Sentences

This month’s featured Digital Library resource highlights ways in which educators can use science content in their ELA curriculum to meet success criteria while supporting California Next Generation Science Standards (CA NGSS). “Constructing Scientific Explanations Using Defining SentencesExternal link opens in new window or tab. (Digital Library account required), for students in grade five, is designed to develop ELA skills for use in technical writing through the drafting of scientific explanations. The lesson, which is based on an NGSS Earth’s Systems Water Unit, promotes cross-curricular instruction and can be modified to address any grade-five science concept.

In this lesson, the students first review the “Scientific Explanation Guidelines,” included in the resource, and reference prior learning. They then work in groups to review and investigate science materials to compose claims and elicit evidence of understanding. They go on to record evidence of learning in a vocabulary word bank, and then revise and refine the claims they composed earlier. This is done for a scenario in which they write, for a community experiencing a groundwater shortage, technical explanations for why it rains. The collaborative nature of this resource provides numerous opportunities for the teacher to elicit, interpret, and act on evidence of student learning.

This resource, submitted to the Digital Library by California State Network of Educators member Toni David, is featured in the CDE’s Formative Assessment in Action video series. It is supported by the engaging 12-minute video “Formative Assessment in Action,” which includes Ms. David using the formative assessment process to deliver the lesson to a class of grade five students. To view more instructional videos showing educators using Digital Library resources and the formative assessment process in the classroom, visit the CDE Formative Assessment in Action series Web page.

Spotlight on Accessibility

Streamline is an embedded accommodation that provides a streamlined interface of the test in an alternate, simplified format in which the items are displayed below the stimuli. The streamline accommodation may benefit a small number of students who have specific learning and/or reading disabilities requiring that text be presented in a more sequential format.

More information on streamline use can be found in Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium: Usability, Accessibility, and Accommodations Guidelines, available on the Smarter Balanced Web site 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.. In addition, short video tutorials are available on the CAASPP Portal. Find them on the Embedded Universal Tools, Designated Supports, and Accommodations Video Tutorials Web page External link opens in new window or tab..

Please share this e-mail 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 e-mail message to 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 | | 916-445-8765
Last Reviewed: Friday, May 11, 2018