Finding the Balance

Learning and Assessment in KCS

SchoolNet Updates

As you know, SchoolNet is the assessment component of HomeBase. It was free for school districts to use during this pilot year. We have used SchoolNet for pretests, first quarter and midterm assessments. However, it has not met our standards of reliability and data validity because DPI is still working with Pearson to customize the assessment tool to improve functioning and reporting capabilities. As a result we will not use SchoolNet for district benchmark assessments next school year.

Due to the stumbling blocks that have been encountered during the rollout DPI is negotiating with Pearson to try to get SchoolNet to be free to school districts for another year. If you haven't visited SchoolNet in the last month I encourage you to give it another try. The performance has improved dramatically. You can use SchoolNet to find high quality question banks for ELA, Math, Science and Social Studies. These questions can be used for formative assessments, common formative assessments and as tools during classroom instruction. There are also lesson and unit plans within the Curriculum Resources in SchoolNet that you may find helpful.

If you or your department would like to learn about how SchoolNet can be used in the classroom please contact the accountability department

Discovery Education Suite of Tools

We are very excited to begin using Discovery Education Assessments. We will pilot the assessments this spring to administer our 3rd quarter ELA and Math benchmarks and Biology and English II assessments at ALB. These assessments will provide different information than we have had in the past. Each benchmark assessment takes about 45 minutes to administer online and will include questions that cover all standards within the course. This will allow us to look at student achievement by standard, student score projections and will also give us information about student growth! The reports will be available to teachers immediately after students complete the assessments. You will find the reports to be easy to read and very informative. There are analysis documents that can help you guide you through the assessment results. You will receive instructions about how to access the reports soon.

Beginning in the fall we will offer professional development about how to interpret the reports and how to use the information to inform your instruction. There are even question banks within Discovery Education that can be used at the school or classroom level. The assessment resources link seamlessly to all of the high quality videos, audio files and activities within Discover Ed. All KCS teachers and students already have accounts within Discovery Education. If you need help logging in please see your tech facilitator.

End of the Year Testing Schedule

A comprehensive list and descriptions of all of the state tests that we administer can be found here. For a complete schedule of KCS end of the year testing click here. You will notice a significant change to our testing schedule as a result of General Statute ยง115C-174.12(a)(4) which states that all annual assessments of student achievement and all final exams for courses shall be administered within the final 10 instructional days of the school year for year-long courses and within the final five instructional days of the semester for semester courses.

Have Questions? Need Assistance?

Please feel free to contact me for questions or support.