Getting The State Assessment Out Of The Box: Part 2 – “The Use of Classroom Based State Assessment”


Today’s guest post is from Don Gifford. Don is the Education Program Consultant for History/Government, Social Studies, and Career Standards and Assessment Services for the Kansas State Department of Education.

So in Part One, we suggested that the current HGSS assessment is different than anything that good teachers do in the classroom.  We implied that in many cases learning stops for two days while we take the assessment, and that schools, teachers, or students gain little from the assessment or its results. Also we imagined a different kind of state assessment, one based in the classroom where teachers and student could collaborate on what the assessment looks like.

In Part Two, we will be talking about how a classroom based state assessment might be used.

From the work of the Joint Committee on Standards for Kansas-Can-blue_white-gold-starEducational Evaluation and the book titled Classroom Assessment Standards for PreK-12 Teachers, we come to a second set of standards that talk about the uses of the classroom based state assessment.

Use: Careful analysis of student performance should yield information that can be used to guide new teaching and learning.

Standard #1
“The methods for analyzing evidence of student learning would be appropriate for the assessment purpose and practice.”

What if there was a rigorous rubric that could be applied to any number of classroom assessments providing guidance, direction, and feedback to the teacher and the student?

Standard #2
“Classroom assessment practices should provide timely and useful feedback to improve student learning.”

What if teachers were able to provide rapid critical feedback and coaching to improve student learning and performance?

Standard #3
“Analysis of student performance should inform instructional planning and next steps to support ongoing student learning.”

What if teachers could use formative and the summative assessment to make instructional changes for each student immediately?

Standard #4
“Summative grades and comments should reflect student achievement of the learning expectations.”

What if the assessment was iterative, could be improved over time and allowed for reflection, review, and revision?

Standard #5
“Assessment reports should be based on a sufficient body of evidence and provide a summary of a student’s learning in a clear, timely, accurate, and useful manner.”

What if the assessment had multiple measures providing more targeted feedback for future learning?

Just imagine. I will be presenting on the assessment at the Annual Kansas Social Studies Conference October 28th and 29th in Emporia. Find more information about the conference and registration here.  

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Keep an eye on the Doing Social Studies Blog for Part Three.

About Kori Green

I teach 8th grade social studies at El Dorado Middle School in El Dorado, KS. I enjoy U.S. history, dabble in British history, and love incorporating technology in the classroom.

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