March 15, 2016
Dear Parent or Guardian,
Each spring students across Vermont take a statewide test called Smarter Balanced assessment (SBAC). Smarter Balanced assessment is required by federal legislation, Every Student Succeeds Act, for students in grades 3 – 8 and grade 11. It assesses the Common Core State Standards which are our state standards in literacy and math.
SBAC assessment provides information about proficiency on state standards, growth and progress over time, as well as readiness for college and career. The assessment specifically looks at grade level standards and broad claims (see back) that demonstrate college and career readiness. The goal of the assessment is to demonstrate learning in this year and over time in order to best prepare students for learning beyond high school.
This assessment differs from previous statewide assessments in many ways. The test is untimed so students may work at an individual pace to complete each section. Test questions adjust levels of difficulty based on a student’s answers to earlier questions. Students needing accommodations have these embedded into the test. With Smarter Balanced assessment, each student has a different version of test based on individual needs and answers.
Last year was our first experience with Smarter Balanced assessment. Our students and staff did a remarkable job adjusting to a brand new assessment, on-line format and revised standards-based curriculum. This year, with the curriculum and assessment firmly in place, our students and staff are well prepared for the assessment!
Director of Curriculum and Instruction