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CAASPP Update, Issue 96

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail sent out April 8, 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:
  • Summative Assessments
  • Interim Assessments
  • Digital Library
  • California Alternate Assessments
Summative Assessments

This is week five of implementing the online Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments. As LEAs progress through test administration-related tasks, whether preparing for, just starting, in the middle of, or finishing up the online assessments, CAASPP Update readers are strongly encouraged to regularly visit the CDE CAASPP System web page and CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab. for new and updated resources and information, including the following:

  • As of Monday, April 6, more than 276,000 students have been administered at least one Smarter Balanced Summative Assessment, with 382 LEAs having administered at least one online test.
  • In order to perform system maintenance and upgrades, the Completion Status system, accessible from the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab., will experience downtime from midnight Pacific time (PT) on Saturday, April 18, through midnight PT on Sunday, April 19. LEA CAASPP coordinators, site coordinators, and test administrators (TAs) use the Completion Status system to view test progress information for students participating in the Smarter Balanced Summative and Interim Assessments. The Completion Status User Guide is posted on the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab., Test Administration tab, Instructions and Manuals.
  • The CDE CAASPP Communications Toolkit is a highly useful Web page featuring links to key resources, including documents that can be used to inform schools, parents, students, and community members about the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments. This web page was recently updated to include Spanish language versions of videos designed to provide high school students and elementary/middle school students with key information about the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments. English language versions of these videos also are available.
  • The CAASPP Dual Logins graphic, updated in March 2015, displays the logins required to access the two systems (i.e., CAASPP and Smarter Balanced) and the components of these systems. In order to administer the summative and interim assessments and access the formative assessment resources, teachers and administrators in California must have access to both systems.
Interim Assessments

Over one million interim assessments have been started across over 750 California LEAs! TA resources to support the administration of the interim assessments can be found on the CAASPP website External link opens in new window or tab. under the TA Resources tab, Resources, Interim Assessments. These resources include manuals and training videos for administering, scoring, and reporting results from the interim assessments.

Digital Library

Smarter Balanced will soon host a Digital Library Spotlight Forum Series External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF) that will feature two of the Cognitively Based Assessment of, for, and as Learning (CBAL) modules in the Digital Library. Webinars will take place on April 15 and 16, with forum discussions to follow May 4 through 8. The webinars will be recorded for those who are unable to attend the live presentations. Participants are encouraged to try using the featured strategies in their own classrooms, and then join the Spotlight Forum discussions to share their experiences with others and provide feedback to the authors. Registration for this event is required by April 13, and participants must be registered users of the Digital Library. Any LEA CAASPP coordinators who need assistance with registering new users should contact the Digital Library Help Desk by phone at 855-631-1510.

California Alternate Assessment

The California Alternate Assessments (CAA) is for students who are in ungraded programs and whose IEP team has designated that they take the CAA. Those students have been assigned a California Pupil Achievement Data System (CALPADS) two-character alpha designation of UU (“Unknown Grade Level”), UE (“Ungraded Elementary”), or US (“Ungraded Secondary”) instead of a two-character numeric grade assignment. Those designations are now included in the CAASPP Test Operations Management System (TOMS), and LEA CAASPP coordinators will use those designations to assign students to the CAA field test in TOMS.

Test examiners also will assign testing grade levels, which will be done at the time of testing. The determination of a student’s grade level for the CAA is done by subtracting five from what his or her chronological age was on September 1, 2014. For example, a student who was eleven years old on September 1 would be given the grade six tests (i.e., 11 – 5 = 6). To aid in this calculation, students’ date of birth will appears in TOMS. Following the field test, validation steps will be conducted to confirm that grade levels were assigned correctly.

Note: Students who repeat grade eleven for multiple years continue to take the CAA until enrolled in grade twelve or, if enrolled in an ungraded program, until they are seventeen years old.

More CAA developments:

  • The Training Tests for the CAA are now available and are linked at the top of the CAASPP CAA web page External link opens in new window or tab.. The sample CAA Directions for Administration (DFA) has been updated to include these training items. Please share this information with CAA test examiners in your LEA.

    The Training Tests provide CAA test examiners and students with an opportunity to become familiar with the format and “feel” of the CAA items. Note: The sample DFA is not for administration of the field test; it is to be used only for the Training Test.

    Secure DFAs for the field test are specific to grade levels and version assignments. The DFAs will be available for download from TOMS prior to testing.

  • CAA version assignments for administration of the CAA will become available on Monday, April 13, on the CAASPP CAA Version Assignments Web page. Version assignment PDF links are sorted by county. The version assignments contained in the PDFs are listed by LEA, and then by school.

    Secure CAA DFAs that correspond to these version assignments are available for download from TOMS. When opening TOMS, select the [? Help] button in the top right corner of the Web page to view a list of available documents. There are three versions per grade level. Schools should select and download DFAs that match their assigned version numbers and distribute them to CAA test examiners who have signed and returned CAASPP Test Security Affidavits (available on the CAASPP Forms web page External link opens in new window or tab.) and have completed the CAA Test Administration Tutorial (available on the CAASPP CAA web page External link opens in new window or tab.).

    Questions about version assignments or general questions about the 2014–15 administration of the CAA should be directed to CalTAC by phone at 800-955-2954 or by e-mail at caltac@ets.org.

  • Additional CAA resources, including the archived “CAA Field Test Introduction and Instructions for Administration for LEA CAASPP Coordinators and CAASPP Test Site Coordinators” webcast and presentation, the CAA Field Test Administration Manual, and the Sample Directions for Administration of the California Alternate Assessments, are linked on the CAASPP CAA web page External link opens in new window or tab..
Additional Information

To join the CDE CAASPP email list, send a blank email 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 email 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 to CalTAC@ets.org.

Questions:   California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress Office | caaspp@cde.ca.gov | 916-445-8765
Last Reviewed: Thursday, August 9, 2018
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