Retool Assessment and Accountability
Strategies to Make the Vision a Reality
- Multiple measures
- Growth measures
- Adaptive assessments
- Technology-based assessments
- Professional opportunities to build assessment expertise
Teachers have a range of assessments to measure student mastery in all subjects. These include formative assessments given alongside lessons to better determine if students are developing skills and understanding. Summative assessments are administered to determine the level of mastery. Students have a voice in which assessments they complete (essays, projects, presentations, tests), with teachers guiding them to ensure a variety of assessments measure various skills. Students can re-take assessments to demonstrate mastery.
Assessments are designed so that the difficulty of the questions adapts to the student’s ability to answer questions. The adaptive assessments include items appropriate to the student’s state of readiness. If a student correctly answers questions at his or her grade level, the assessment offers more challenging questions.
Technology-based classroom assessments provide quicker, if not immediate, feedback on learning. Technology helps students self-monitor learning and with teacher guidance, recognize and respond to their strengths and weaknesses. It also provides teachers with ongoing data for immediate and targeted adjustments to instruction.
The new accountability system includes five categories. As part of this reform, the state test is computer-based and partially adaptive, allowing some adjustments to determine grade level. In 2016, when the state has several years of data, Connecticut’s accountability system will hold schools accountable for improving student achievement over time, rather than just taking into account static measures of achievement. A revised accountability system is in the process of implementation with multiple data sources, not just test scores. In addition, the new accountability system has a major emphasis on growth of student learning.