Skip to main content
California Department of Education Logo

CAASPP Update, Issue 140

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update, February 10, 2016.

Focusing on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System, including the Smarter Balanced assessments—a major component of CAASPP—and the California Alternate Assessments and science assessments.

February Downtime

Don’t be taken by surprise! The Interim Assessment Viewing System, as well as the Smarter Balanced practice tests and training tests, will be unavailable during scheduled downtime this month: 9 p.m. Wednesday, February 24, through 9 p.m. Sunday, February 28. All other CAASPP online systems will be available, and there will be no interruption to the interim or summative assessment Test Delivery System.

Assessment Accessibility

Designated supports for summative assessments must be entered into the Test Operations Management System (TOMS) before testing. Designated supports are available to any student when recommended by a teacher. Local educational agencies (LEAs) are encouraged to (1) use input from students and parents when making decisions about designated supports; and (2) use a methodical and consistent process in selecting and assigning designated supports to ensure maximum benefit to students.  

Reporting a Test Security Incident

The online CAASPP Security and Test Administration Incident Reporting System (STAIRS) is the starting point for LEAs and schools to report a test security incident or other testing issue that interferes with the administration and completion of an assessment. STAIRS is accessed through TOMS by selecting “STAIRS/Appeals” on the left hand directory of the TOMS landing page.

LEA CAASPP coordinators and site coordinators must ensure that all test security and administration incidents are documented by means of the online STAIRS form. All incidents that require an appeal to be submitted through the appeals portal must be entered in the STAIRS system before accessing appeals. After the STAIRS form is submitted, e-mails containing a case number and next steps will be sent to the submitter and to the LEA CAASPP coordinator. 

Science Assessments—CST, CMA, and CAPA

For the 2015–16 test administration, California will administer the paper-pencil California Standards Test (CST) for Science, California Modified Assessment (CMA) for Science, and California Alternate Performance Assessment (CAPA) for Science in grades five, eight, and ten. California Education Code Section 60640 requires the CDE to administer these tests until a successor assessment is made available.

LEAs will administer these summative science assessments to students during an available testing window of 25 instructional days that includes 12 instructional days before and after the completion of 85 percent of the school’s or track’s annual instructional days.

For information about ordering materials for the science assessments, please contact the California Technical Assistance Center by phone at 800-955-2954 or by e-mail at

New Brochures Help Explain California Common Core State Standards

What kinds of things will my child learn in mathematics and English language arts in first grade? In high school? New brochures focused on the California Common Core State Standards for mathematics and English language arts/literacy (ELA) are now available to help teachers and other educators answer such questions from parents, guardians, and other community members.

The brochures, which can be downloaded from the Sacramento County Office of Education Web site, are organized by grade span and provide insights into what students will be learning:

The brochures on the mathematics standards showcase example problems, and the brochures on the ELA standards highlight the progression of learning through the grade levels. Each brochure also provides suggestions for parents/guardians to support their students’ learning and a list of additional resources.

The brochures were developed on behalf of the Consortium for the Implementation of the Common Core under the leadership of the Curriculum Frameworks and Instructional Resources Division of the CDE and the Sacramento County Office of Education. For the best visual presentation, the brochures are designed to be printed two sided (flipped on the short edge), and then folded into thirds.

Reminder: System Downtime in April

As announced last week, system downtime is scheduled for April 7–10. Please see issue 139 for more details on the particular systems that will be impacted.

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 | | 916-445-4821
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, March 25, 2020
Recently Posted in Testing

  • Assessment Spotlight, Issue 111 (added 27-Oct-2020)
    California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) email update, October 9, 2020.
  • Assessment Spotlight, Issue 109 (added 22-Oct-2020)
    California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) email update, September 25, 2020.
  • Initial ELPAC (added 21-Oct-2020)
    Information about the Initial English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC).