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The Elementary DLC met on Monday, February 27, 2023. The DLC Committee reflected on the first interim literacy assessment and gave feedback leading to a recommendation for the second ELA interim assessment. In order to ensure that all voices were heard and able to share their feedback we reflected as small groups on what went well, what was difficult and what suggestions did they have for the interim literacy assessment. Then, we shared feedback as a whole group and made the decision to make the second ELA interim assessment optional. The committee will use future meetings this year and in June to develop new interim assessment plans for next year. If you would like to read more about the discussion and feedback that the committee received, you can read the attached document.

February 27 DLC Meeting

The DLC Committee reflected on the first interim assessment and gave feedback leading to a recommendation for the second interim assessment. In order to ensure that all voices were heard and able to share their feedback we completed the following steps:

  1. Shared the feedback from principals that was shared at the T&L meeting.
  2. Each committee member then filled out a graphic organizer to share what went well, what was difficult and what suggestions they had. They filled it out from the lens of their school and what feedback had been shared with them and also their own experience giving the assessment to their class.
  3. We had 4 tables of teachers. Each group of teachers went around their table and shared their feedback. Then one table representative wrote down the common themes/feedback on a new graphic organizer.
  4. Several tables asked similar questions about the purpose of the interim assessment. So, we paused discussions at our tables to review Dylan Wiliam’s research on cycles of formative assessments and discussed how the interim assessment fits into the long cycle of formative assessment. We reviewed the purpose of the assessment with determining curriculum alignment, PD needs and accountability. The diagram drawn on the board by Anne-Marie was helpful for the committee members to see and keep in mind during our discussion.
  5. As a whole group we then shared what went well, what was difficult and what suggestions they had for the next interim assessment. While we were sharing, Christine was typing the responses into a new graphic organizer that was projected. If the same feedback was given multiple times it is indicated by an asterisk on the graphic organizer.

General Feedback

During our discussion as a group, we discussed the test was easy to access and the platform had great features. We liked that students could save their progress, and have the test read aloud and even translated. It was easy to grade the written responses. The questions were more similar to the questions we would see on RISE. There were many valuable discussions with students as classes prepared for the assessment and went through practice tests together. Each table then shared what was difficult about the interim assessment. Each table shared that it was too long of a test and the questions were difficult. It was also difficult for the younger kids to use the technology and scroll through the passages. The reading texts were too long and it felt like we were testing multiple good-to-know items, not essentials. It took a long time to teach the students how to take the test and go through practice questions. The teachers felt they did not gain valuable data from the assessment. It did not give any new information for how students were performing especially at our Title 1 schools and lower level students. They also questioned the validity of the scores because some of their students just clicked through the test and guessed during the assessment.

Recommendations

The committee considered the following recommendations:

  1. Give the assessment as we planned
  2. Edit the assessment and take out the “good to know” questions and limit the writing questions
  3. Change the guidelines for the test
  4. Cancel the assessment—From our discussions on the recommendations here are a few takeaways:
    • they did not want to revise the test because it would mess with the validity of the assessment
    • they wish the assessment could have a growth measure component so they could see how their students were improving
    • they gain more value from their iReady/Reading Plus assessments because it shows the growth of all students
    • they liked the idea of maybe moving back to administering the unit assessments that are shorter
    • the committee would like to look at maybe using the RISE assessments for 3-6
    • some teachers would still like to administer the assessment and see how their studentsperformed
    • worried about testing fatigue (close to RISE assessments)

Committee Decision

After discussing the feedback from principals, teachers and committee members, the committee decided to make the second district interim assessment optional. The decision to administer the assessment will be made by the building principal. The committee will discuss the interim assessment we will use moving forward during June.

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