Learn About Statewide Testing Changes

This year, schools across California will be “field testing” the Smarter Balanced Assessment to ensure that all questions are formatted correctly and are consistent with the Common Core State Standards. As this is a field test year, students and schools will not be scored individually or as a whole and there will be no results generated for the 2013-2014 school year. The Smarter Balanced Assessment field test will be administered in the spring in Grades 3 through 8 and to some students in Grades 9 through 11. Participation in the field test will help our students prepare for these exams in future years. A practice test for this exam is available online at http://sbac.portal.airast.org/practice-test/.

As school districts across the state transition to the Smarter Balanced Assessment, there will continue to be exams taken at various grade levels in the areas of science, math, and English/language arts. Following is a list of the state exams that will be taken by PYLUSD students for the 2013-2014 school year:
• Smarter Balanced Assessment Field Test – Grades 3 through 8 and selected students in Grades 9 and 11 in math and language arts.
• California Standards Test (CST) for science in Grades 5, 8, and 10.
• CST for all students in Grade 11 in both English/language arts and math (this includes the Early Assessment Program for Community Colleges and California State Universities).

Students with an Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) will be tested as follows:
• Most students with disabilities will participate in the Smarter Balanced Assessment field test as indicated above. Accommodations are available for the test, as designated in the student’s IEP.
• The California Modified Assessment (CMA) for science will be administered to students in Grades 5, 8, and 10 if the student’s IEP calls for such an exam.
• The California Alternative Assessment Program (CAPA) will be given to students with an alternate curriculum in Grades 2 through 11 with an IEP that calls for such an exam.

You may be interested to know that the Smarter Balanced Assessment is computerized and will take approximately 3.5 hours. Your child’s school will be sending out information regarding testing plans in March. PYLUSD student testing will begin in April and will be completed in May.

For future updates and additional information, I invite you to visit the PYLUSD website (www.pylusd.org).


Candy Plahy
Assistant Superintendent, Educational Services
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