We recently posted a piece on our Opinions page that outlines the current expectations of statewide tests, and presents a solution that includes teacher-administered measures without adding additional testing time or burden on teachers. We provide a brief summary below. Read the full article.
We’re celebrating the launch of eMPower Assessments™, a new college and career readiness assessment solution for grades 3–8 that debuts today, nationwide. It’s the district interim and formative classroom components that complement the statewide summative solution already available and in use. We’re excited to offer this solution for many reasons, but most importantly because it ties so closely to our mission to improve student learning.
Limitations of “Off-the-Shelf” District Assessments
Smarter tests. Less testing time. Quality data. Important needs that we frequently hear about when it comes to K–12 assessment. All assessment companies want to bring you products that meet these needs while delivering accurate results. No one wants to set students up for failure or waste time; we want testing that gives districts and teachers accurate measures of learning to inform instruction.
Bridging the Instructional Gap
Five million students across 11 states and the District of Columbia took the PARCC® tests in 2014–2015. These assessments are intended to measure the extent to which students are meeting the expectations of new, more rigorous college- and career-ready standards. Many participating states’ districts, schools, students, and parents were disappointed by lower-than-expected results from the exams. The message to these states was clear: Schools need to address the gap between instructional strategies and the high expectations of the standards measured by the PARCC tests.
In today’s educational marketplace, many different formative assessment options claim to improve instruction and ensure student success. Districts and teachers have their pick of assessment items, all supposedly of high quality and standards-aligned. It can be overwhelming.
Experts agree that formative assessment practices significantly improve student learning and help close the achievement gap. We want to support your efforts to take action with data and help your building leaders, teachers, and ultimately students get the most out of formative assessment.