Assessment is a critical element in the instructional process and has a direct relationship between what is assessed and what is taught. For the instructional process to be effective assessment, curriculum and instruction need to be aligned. Assessment within the OCDE Special Schools is an ongoing process, not a single test or event. It consists of, but is not limited to, data collection, work samples, informal tests, progress reports, observations and collaboration with specialists.
California Alternate Performance Assessment (CAPA)
is the alternate performance assessment section of California’s
Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) assessment program. The CAPA
is administered annually to students identified with significant
disabilities who cannot take part in the general statewide assessment
programs. The CAPA evaluates student progress based upon a sub-set of
standards from California’s general education standards. For more
information on the CAPA, please visit www.cde.ca.gov/spbranch/sed/capa/.
California High School Exit Exam Results
California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) is primarily used as a
graduation requirement in California, but the results of this exam are
also used to determine AYP for high schools, as required by the federal
NCLB law. The CAHSEE has an English-language arts section and a math
section and, for purposes of calculating AYP, three performance levels
were set: Advanced, Proficient, and Not Proficient. Please note the
score a student must achieve to be considered Proficient is different
than the passing score for the graduation requirement. The table below
displays the percentage of students in the 10thgrade scoring at
Proficient or Advanced levels for the most recent three-year period.
California Physical Fitness Test
spring, all students in grades 5, 7, and 9 are required to participate
in the California Physical Fitness Test (PFT). The test measures six key
fitness areas: 1) Aerobic Capacity, 2) Body Composition, 3) Abdominal
4) Trunk Extension Strength, 5) Upper Body Strength, 6)
Flexibility. To meet fitness standards, students must score in the
Healthy Fitness Zone (HFZ) on all six fitness tests.
California Standards Tests
multiple-choice California Standards Tests (CST) are part of the
Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) and are administered only to
students in California public schools. These tests determine students’
achievement of the California Academic Content Standards and provide
feedback on their success given what they are expected to know in each
grade level and subject. For the 2007 STAR exam, students in grades 2-11
took an English-language arts and mathematics test. Students in grades 4
and 7 also participated in an essay-writing test. History-Social
science tests were given to students in grades 8 and 11, and students in
grades 5, 8, and 10 took a science test. Students in grades 9-11 who
completed a Standards-based science course and/or history-social science
course were given additional exams. Because tests are meant to measure
how well students achieve standards rather than how well they do
compared to other students, the results are reported as performance
levels. The five performance levels are: • Advanced (exceeds State
Standards) • Proficient (meets Standards) • Basic • Below basic • Far
below basic Students scoring at the Proficient or Advanced level meet
State Standards in that content area. The adjacent tables show the
percentage of students that scored at proficient or advanced levels in
English-language arts, mathematics, science, and history social
science. For a complete report on all subgroups and their scores by
grade level, please visit http://star.cde.ca.gov/.
Criterion Referenced Tracking
(OCDE) Special Schools program performs ongoing tracking of student
progress through the use of published criterion referenced tests and
developmental checklists. Typically, these tests/checklists are
administered prior to each student’s IEP and assist teachers in the
identification and development of meaningful IEP goals and objectives.
The annual use of these measures greatly assists in the monitoring of
student progress and the development of meaningful IEP goals and
Graduation/Certificates of Completion
public high school students beginning with the graduating Class of 2006
must pass the two-part California High School Exit Exam in order to
receive a diploma. It is given each spring to all 10th graders, and at
other times during the year to 11th and 12th graders who have not passed
both the language arts section and math section. The exam measures
whether students have mastered California State Standards and Frameworks
in English/language arts and mathematics.
program for OCDE students on the graduation track focuses on the skills
necessary to meet the proficiency and graduation requirements
established by the school district of residence. Diplomas are awarded to
students meeting regular or differential standards as indicated in a
student's Individualized Education Program (IEP).
are not working toward meeting graduation requirements, as defined
within the IEP, receive a Certificate of Completion.
Norm Referenced Tests
referenced tests (NRT) are nationally administered tests that provide
statistical feedback on a national level. The purpose of these tests is
to determine how well California students are achieving academically
compared to students nationally in reading, language, spelling, and
mathematics in grades 3 and 7 only. The current NRT adopted by the State
Board of Education is the California Achievement Test, Sixth Edition,
or CAT/6. For a complete report on all subgroups and their scores by
grade level, please visit http://star.cde.ca.gov/.
Preschool Desired Results- Access (DRDP-A)
a criterion-referenced assessment system developed by the State of
California to measure the progress of children with disabilities toward
achieving a set of identified cognitive, personal, social,
physical/motor, and health outcomes. This test is administered twice
yearly and results are submitted to the State Department of Education.
Students enrolled in OCDE Special Schools Program are provided a multidisciplinary triennial assessment. With informed written consent, appropriately qualified personnel evaluate the student’s strengths and all areas of suspected disability. This assessment measures areas of suspected disability specific to a student’s cognitive, academic, language, social/emotional skills, and/or educationally relevant health, developmental and medical findings. The assessment includes information gathered in a variety of ways to provide important functional, developmental and academic information that identifies the strengths, present skill levels and areas of educational need in all areas of suspected disability, including but not limited to: review of records, student observation, classroom work samples, interviews with persons knowledgeable about the student, district and/or State assessments, psychometric tests. This evaluation provides the IEP team information that assists in determining if a student has an eligible disability and because of that disability, needs special education or related services in order to make progress in school.