Mill Valley School District

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CAASPP Testing

Parent Letter

CAASPP Spring 2017 Testing Schedule 

                       Mill Valley School District - CAASPP Spring 2017 Schedule


3rd-5th Grade Testing

6th-8th Grade Testing

April 24-28


6th, 7th & 8th Grade – ELA Test

May 1-5

4th Grade

5th Grade

6th, 7th & 8th Grade – ELA Test

May 8-12

4th Grade


6th, 7th & 8th Grade – Math Test


May 15-19

5th Grade

3rd Grade

6th, 7th & 8th Grade – Math Test

May 22-26

3rd Grade

5th Grade Science Test – Pilot Test

8th Grade Science Test – Pilot Test

May 29-June 2

3rd Grade



Dear Mill Valley Families,

California’s academic standards – the things we want students to know and be able to do – are designed so students graduate well prepared for college and their career path. One way we measure their progress is through the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) assessments. Students across California in grades 3-8 and high school take these assessments each spring. These tests were created specifically to gauge each student’s performance in English Language Arts/literacy (ELA), mathematics, and science. These tests measure the skills called for by the academic standards, including the ability to write clearly, think critically, and solve problems.

Because CAASPP tests are given statewide, they provide an opportunity to measure the skills of all students against the same academic standards. Given online, the tests are computer-adaptive, allowing more precise measurement of individual skills.

In the next couple of months, 3rd-8th grade students will take Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments for ELA and mathematics. In addition, 5th and 8th grade students will take the California Science Test – Pilot Test.

Smarter Balanced Assessments

The Smarter Balanced ELA and mathematics tests reflect California’s rigorous academic standards and allow students to demonstrate analytical writing and critical thinking skills as well as their knowledge of facts. In 2017, parents will be able to compare results across three years (2014-15, 2015-16, and 2016-17) to determine their child’s progress in meeting the standards. (Exceptions: Only two years of data will be reported for students in grade 4, and only one year of data will be reported for students in grades three.)

To learn more about these tests, please visit the California Department of Education’s (CDE) Test Score Guide Web site at, which provides informative guides and test score descriptions as well as sample test items at different levels of difficulty.

Another great resource are the Practice and Training Tests, which can be found on the CDE’s Smarter Balanced Practice and Training Tests Web page at Here, parents can experience the kinds of questions that students will encounter on the tests.

California Science Test - Pilot Test

California’s new state standards for science call for students to think and work like scientists and engineers – asking questions and learning through hands-on investigation and discovery. Working with science teachers, California is developing a new assessment that emphasizes scientific thinking and reasoning. This year 5th and 8th grade students will participate in the tryout of test items for this future assessment. While this tryout will not provide scores for students, it is an important first step in developing an assessment that will fairly and accurately measure how students are achieving on the new science standards. For additional information about the new science tests and sample questions, please visit the CDE’s CAASPP Science Assessment Web page at  

If you have any questions regarding your child’s participation in statewide assessments, please contact your child’s principal.