Getting The State Assessment Out Of The Box: Part 3 – “The Quality 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 recognized that the state HGSS assessment wasn’t aligned with good instruction and in Part Two, we identified that the feedback came too late to inform that instruction.

In Part One, we imagined an assessment that was aligned to the instructional strategies already being employed in good social studies classrooms.  What if we took what teachers were already doing and made those rigorous lessons work as the state HGSS assessment? In Part Two, we talked about how the state HGSS assessment could be used by teachers and students to actually inform teaching and learning. In Part Three,

Kansas-Can-blue_white-gold-starwe’ll go back to the work of the Joint Committee on Standards for Educational Evaluation and the book called Classroom Assessment Standards for PreK-12 Teachers, we come to a third set of standards. Our Part One discussion talked about the foundations of classroom assessment. In Part Two, we talked about the uses of the classroom-based state assessment and now in Part Three, we will imagine what a quality classroom based state assessment would look like.

Quality: Assessment must inspire confidence that the data is accurate, dependable, fair, and attends to issues of accessibility and equity.

Standard #1
Classroom assessment practices should be responsive to and respectful of the cultural and linguistic diversity of students and their communities.”

What if the assessment topic could be of the student’s choosing and relevant to their culture, community, and interest?

Standard #2
Classroom assessment practices should be appropriately differentiated to meet the specific educational needs of all students.”

What if the assessment could be personalized to the interest, passion, and learning outcomes of each student?

Standard #3
Classroom assessment practices and subsequent decisions should be free from all factors unrelated to the intended purposes of the assessment.”

What if the assessment was free from objective comparison between students, teachers, schools, and districts?

Standard #4
Classroom assessment practices should provide consistent, dependable, and appropriate information that support sound interpretations and decisions about each student’s knowledge and skills.”

What if the assessment provided consistent dependable and appropriate information for each student?

Standard #5
Classroom assessment practices should be monitored and revised to improve their overall quality.”

What if teachers, schools, or districts could review and revise the state assessment moment by moment, student by student?

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 next week for Part Four of my state assessment overview.

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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