This guidance document from the U.S. Department of Education provides information on how federal funds under ESSA can support the President’s Testing Action Plan to reduce unnecessary, redundant, and low-quality tests and help states and districts strike the right balance between testing and instruction.
The launch of the Student Assessment Inventory for School Districts National Network seeks to evaluate the numerous assessments that students take, which reduce the time spent learning. This program offers $5,000-$7,000 to districts to evaluate these assessments from students' point of view to review their assessments and assessment strategies. Applications for the sub-grant are due Dec. 16, 2016.
The National Council on Measurement in Education (NCME), an organization of measurement professionals, has adopted a policy statement regarding refusals to take state assessments. The NCME "strongly supports student participation in state assessment" because they allow "those concerned with the quality and equity of education to plan and advocate for needed resources at both the system and the local levels. When students refuse to participate in state assessment, the accuracy of results, and our ability to improve education for all, is severely undermined." To read the full position statement, click here (available until 12/10/16).
A one-year waiver extension was granted to New Hampshire’s existing competency-based assessment pilot. The waiver was extended because New Hampshire Department of Education has demonstrated that the pilot assessment system being developed fulfills ESSA requirements in advancing student academic achievement, providing assistance to the populations participating in the pilot, and maintaining or improving transparency in reporting on student achievement and school performance.