Dear Parents and Guardians:
I am pleased to announce the availability of the Smarter Balanced Practice Tests. Smarter Balanced is the system of academic tests that will replace the Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) Program tests in English–language arts and math beginning in the 2014–15 school year. The Smarter Balanced tests are based on the Common Core State Standards adopted by California in August 2010.
The Smarter Balanced tests will generally be taken on computers, and the Practice Tests provide a good idea of what the new tests will look like. The Practice Tests are available for everyone to use at www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/sa/practicetest.asp. There is a Practice Test for each of grades 3 through 8 and grade 11 in both English–language arts and math. Each Practice Test has about 30 questions, as well as an answer key.
I encourage you to explore the Practice Tests with your child and discuss them with each other. Your child will also be able to use the Practice Tests on our school computers. The Smarter Balanced Practice Tests will be available through the 2013–14 school year.
If you have questions about the Smarter Balanced Practice Tests, please contact Jason Armstrong in the main office at 385-1041.
Common Core is the new set of educational standards being implemented across California and in most of the United States. The Common Core standards focus on lessons and assessments that teach critical thinking, creativity, and mastery of the content areas. Currently, California has implemented Common Core standards for Mathematics and English Language Arts, with standards in other content areas to follow. For more information on the California Common Core standards, check out the Common Core Resources for Parents and Guardians, or watch this 3-minute video explaining the Common Core State Standards.