By PAULA COKER
Cherokee Elementary School’s testing program for the 2012/2013 school year will change as a result of the adoption of the new Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Mathematics and English Language Arts as well as the North Carolina Essential Standards (ES) for Science. Just as the previous testing program required, our 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students will take End of Grade (EOG) tests in Math and English Language Arts. Only 5th grade elementary students are required to take an End of Grade test in Science.
As with any new assessments, detailed analyses of the results will take place to ensure the test scores are valid and reliable. North Carolina’s Department of Public Instruction will analyze the data from around the state during the summer of 2013. As a result of these factors, we will not receive our scores immediately as we have in the past. We anticipate receiving our scores in October, 2013 and will provide parents and guardians with each student’s Individual Student Report as soon as we receive them. Because of the delayed testing results, no retesting will occur at our school.
Teachers are working hard to prepare our students for the new tests which will be given in May. Our goal is to help students demonstrate their talents and their limitless capabilities!
A snapshot of some of the assessments used in 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades to help prepare our students for success!
- Assessments are given to determine areas of strength as well as areas where students may need extra help and support. After analyzing assessment results, remediation is provided using small group instruction or to individual students.
- Benchmark assessments are given periodically using the ClassScape online assessment system which is also used in school systems throughout North Carolina. The results of benchmarks are clear indicators of how well students are progressing academically towards the End of Grade tests. Each grade level team spends a considerable amount of time analyzing the benchmark results to determine how to improve areas of instruction and provide additional support for students in specific areas.
- ClassScape is also used in formative assessments given in each classroom throughout the school year. These much shorter assessments give teachers additional information to help them focus instruction more precisely to meet student needs.
Some Parent and Guardian Test/Assessment Support Strategies to Use Now!
Students may experience some anxiety about the assessments and the tests. The following strategies may assist our students in reducing anxiety:
- Discuss the assessments and the tests openly and in a positive way.
- Encourage your child to do their best on all assessments and tests.
- Emphasize that scores do not determine a person’s worth.
- Emphasize the results are only one measure of academic performance.
- Praise your child on their work habits and preparation.
Preparing Your Children for the EOG
- Note test dates on your home calendar.
- Schedule non-emergency appointments before or after testing days.
- Encourage your child to take responsibility for homework and class study.
- Help your child learn how to find information independently.
- Praise your child for work well done.
- Encourage your child to ask questions at home and in class.
- Get to know your child’s teacher.
- Attend parent-teacher conferences.
- Discuss your child’s progress with the teachers on a regular basis.
- Assure your child that you value a good education.
- Gather any available test preparation materials.
Thank you for all the work you already do to support your child and our school! Please call your child’s teacher if you want additional information or have further questions about our assessments or tests. We look forward to sharing tests results with you this fall.