Assessment

Overview

We believe that good instruction starts with knowing our students. We work in partnership with families to ensure students are motivated learners, are challenged to their potential, and make continual growth in their learning. An important component of our educational program is a formal assessment system that provides us with data regarding each child’s academic progress. This data is utilized when making educational decisions about the curriculum, the instructional program, and instructional strategies, in addition to pacing and interventions needed for each student. The District 30 assessment system is based on a variety of assessments including classroom assessments, formal assessments, and state-mandated tests. Together, the results from these tests provide us with valuable information that assists us in making data based decisions about each student’s educational program. These assessments help us differentiate for children, maximize the learning potential for all students, and create engaging, enriching learning experiences for all.
This brochure is designed to help parents better understand District 30’s standardized testing program and to guide you in reviewing your child’s individual results on the following tests:

  • PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers)
  • CogAT (Ability Test) (Grades 3 & 5)
  • NWEA Measures of Academic Progress (Grades 1-8)
  • ACCESS (for ELL students)
  • Terra Nova (Grade 8)

When we think about standardized assessment, please keep the following in mind:

  • Standardized testing is only one way to measure student ability and achievement— it is not the only way. Human capabilities are much more diverse and complex than what is measured by standardized achievement tests or school ability tests. As we learn more from the fields of cognitive science and brain research, definition of human learning are changing and becoming broader.
  • Educators consider scores from these assessments as one view, a snapshot, of a student. Classroom performance and teacher assessments are equally important.
  • Teachers also recognize that students’ test-taking skills and attitudes during testing session affect their results.

Below is a chart indicating this year's testing schedule.

PARCC Testing Update - March 11, 2016

From Illinois State Board of Education

100 North First Street * Springfield, Illinois 62777-0001          
www.isbe.net

James T. Meeks                              Tony Smith, Ph.D.  
Chairman of Education                    State Superintendent of Education
______________________________________________________________________________________________________
 
March 8, 2016

Dear Parents,
The testing window for the spring 2016 administration of the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) assessment opened March 7 and continues through June 10. Districts have selected their 30-day testing period within this time frame and will provide those specific dates for your child's test.

This is the second year Illinois has participated in PARCC assessment. The 2016 exam has a simpler format to improve the testing process while still providing reliable information about student achievement. This year's results will allow you to see how your child is growing in his or her knowledge and understanding of the state's learning standards, which are focused on college and career readiness.

No assessment can ever fully capture the skills and abilities of a great teacher or the extraordinary benefits and positive impact of a great school. This assessment is simply one reflection of your child's academic growth. Assessments help provide a sense of where and how we are succeeding and where and how we must improve, along with other indicators, such as classroom work samples and teacher observations. The PARCC assessment is designed to give schools and teachers more information to support improvement efforts and personalize teaching to better guide your child's learning.

These spring assessments correspond with what your child is learning in the classroom and with the performance expectations of the Illinois Learning Standards in English language arts and mathematics. They should not require time outside of school to prepare for the test.

This year ISBE expects to receive PARCC assessment scores much sooner than the 2015 results, allowing our teachers to tailor instruction to meet specific student needs. Districts should receive score reports in the fall.

The PARCC states have released many test items from last year's assessment to help parents and teachers  understand the types of questions their students will be asked. These questions are available through the Partnership Resource Center at https://prc.parcconline.org/assessments/parcc-released-items, which houses a variety of supports available to teachers in PARCC states.

About 85 percent of students are expected to take the assessment online this spring, compared to 75 percent in 2015. You may enjoy sitting down with your child to take the PARCC practice assessment. This is a good opportunity for you and your child to go through what will be expected and become more familiar with the format before your child takes the assessment. You may access the PARCC practice assessments at www.parcconline.org/assessments/practice-tests. You may also find more information at ISBE's PARCC Place at  
www.isbe.net/parcc-place/default.htm and ISBE's Hot Topics page at www.isbe.net/hot-topics.htm.
 
Scores from last year's test administration have provided a new baseline for student performance going forward.

The State Board is proud of our students who took the PARCC assessment last year and is confident in their abilities as we work together to prepare them for success in college and career. Learning begins at home, and we thank you for your partnership in your child's education.

Sincerely,
Tony Smith, Ph.D.
State Superintendent of Education

October 7, 2016

From The Assistant Superintendent
Of Curriculum And Instruction

PARCC 2016 Student Reports

Student reports from last year’s PARCC assessment were
mailed home to families on October 5. During the spring of the
2015-16 school year, students in 3rd through 8th grade
participated in the PARCC assessment for Reading and
Mathematics.

Residents with questions regarding a child’s student report please do not hesitate to contact the child’s building principal, or the Assistant
Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, Dr.
Melissa Hirsch.