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Smarter balanced assessment tests underway in Pleasanton schools

Purpose is to 'test the test,' school superintendent says

The Pleasanton school district, along with other districts throughout the state, is participating in a field test of the new California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) program that will replace the Standardized Testing and Reporting System, also known as the STAR program.

The new test is called the Smarter Balanced Assessment and is aligned to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for English and math, which California adopted in 2010. The CCSS are a group of nationally recognized standards that describe what knowledge and skills students need to be well prepared for college and careers, no matter where they come from or where they live.

"Because we are in a transition year, we will have some paper-based tests along with a field test of the new computer-based tests," said school Superintendent Parvin Ahmadi.

In a letter sent to parents of students currently enrolled in PUSD schools, Ahmadi said California school districts are administering two types of tests this year, paper and online.

The purpose, she explained, is to test the test, evaluating testing software and technology, the effectiveness of test administration and training materials, to establish scoring and reporting levels, and to familiarize students, educators and administrators with online testing.

A practice test is available online at http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/sa/practicetest.asp.

More information is available at the California Department of Education Smarter Balanced Web page: http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/sa/smarterfieldtest.asp/

Pleasanton Weekly staff.

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