|Switzerland of Ohio Local School District|
2623A - TESTING PROGRAM
Purpose of Testing
Testing, like any other element of the District's operation, should have a definite purpose related to District programs or State mandates. No test should be given without first defining its purpose and determining how the results will be used.
SUGGESTED PURPOSES FOR VARIOUS TESTS
|A.||Diagnostic Assessments and Achievement Tests|
|1.||measure a student's progress in achieving District learning outcomes|
|2.||help determine student learning strengths and weaknesses and/or diagnose their causes|
|3.||help assess the effectiveness of a grade level's, school's, or the District's program and/or identify/diagnose educational strengths and weaknesses|
|4.||aid in evaluating curriculum and/or instructional strategies and resources|
|5.||help determine the extent to which a student can perform tasks associated with functional literacy|
|6.||aid in diagnosing problems with literacy task-skills and in providing for appropriate remediation|
|7.||measure the skill in a specific content that is expected at the end of the designated grade|
|8.||measure student comprehension of academic content standards and mastery of related skills for the relevant subject area at each grade, kindergarten through eighth|
|measure a student's mental ability as defined by the tests|
|help determine the appropriate time for a student to begin a learning program|
|D.||Vocations Interest/Aptitude Tests|
|1.||help determine a student's interests or aptitudes for comparison with those related to particular vocational fields|
|2.||assist in the vocational counseling of a student|
Uses of Test Results
The purpose for giving a test is to use the results to improve learning and to communicate with those concerned about how well a student or group of students are learning.
Administration of State-Required Tests
To the extent required by law, the District shall administer the State-required tests for students in third through eighth and tenth grades in accordance with the schedule established by the State Department of Education.
If test results are to be used effectively, an analysis of the test items usually should be the first step. Such an analysis makes it easier to determine where students are strong and where the weaknesses are so that instruction can be geared accordingly. A proper analysis should provide the kind of knowledge that will not only aid in designing appropriate learning activities but in producing a more reliable assessment and more useful communication to both students and their parents.
Disaggregation of Results
The second step for the effective use of test results would be the disaggregation of scores based upon specific criteria determined by the District. Analyzing scores in this way makes it possible to determine if certain groups of students demonstrate particular academic strengths or weaknesses. Such analysis will aid in designing appropriate learning activities or intervention strategies.
Curriculum and Instruction
Administrators will be responsible for instructing staff in how to use test results to both refine the curriculum and improve instructional strategies and resources. To aid in this process, in-service programs may be necessary to strengthen understanding of how different kinds of tests are designed, how to judge reliability and validity, and how to use test information to diagnose and remediate.
Administrators should ensure that teachers and counselors are working cooperatively by sharing information derived from the testing program. The counselors should be using test results and analyses to help students (and their parents) develop a realistic and valid view of their current achievement levels and design and follow through on plans related to both their school and vocational careers. Teachers should also be aware of these plans to help support such plans in the classroom.
Communication with Parents
As one of the important partners in the educative process, it is essential that parents be kept properly informed of standardized test results, particularly those that relate directly to academic achievement. In communicating with parents, particularly with regard to standardized tests, test results should be provided in context, that is, with the purpose of the test(s) clearly stated and the student's measurement compared to standards.
© Neola 2008