Guidance & Testing Update

Winter 2021

Dear Parents/Guardians:

There are many wonderful lessons and experiences happening for the students in the RPSD each day. The staff and administration are grateful for a return to normalcy this year as our students engage in learning for full school days not unlike what they experienced before the pandemic began. In the guidance office our counselors continue to identify student needs and provide both counseling to our students and support for our teachers as they navigate rigorous academics and social interactions.

In this edition of the "Guidance & Testing Update" you will find spring testing dates and practice test support. As the district looks to bridge the achievement gap created by the pandemic a multi-tiered system of support has been developed. I encourage all students to do their best on all spring assessments for accurate placement in academic courses and intervention groups.

I wish you all a very happy and healthy holiday season.

Stay safe and be well,

Colleen Bodek

Director of Guidance/Testing

Spring Testing

New Jersey Student Learning Assessment (NJSLA)

Beginning April 25th, students in grades 3 through 9 and 11 will engage in the New Jersey Student Learning Assessment (NJSLA). Students in grades 3-9 will test in ELA and 3-8 plus Algebra in Math. As we have done in the past, grades 5, 8, 11 will test in science. Students may begin preparing for these exams on the practice test website here. Start dates for our district's schools can be found below:

  • Aldene School- May 2nd
  • Robert Gordon- April 25th
  • Sherman School- May 2nd
  • Roselle Park Middle School- April 25th
  • Roselle Park High School- May 16th

Dynamic Learning Maps (DLM)

The window for DLM testing runs from April 1-May 27th. DLM testers are our IEP students with the most significant cognitive disabilities for whom general state assessments are not appropriate. DLM testers are in grades 3-8 & 11 (ELA and Math) and 5, 8, 11 (Science). Teachers will communicate directly with students and families regarding specific test dates. Information related to practice testing can be accessed by clicking here.

ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 & Alternative Access for ELLs (ELL students grades: K-12)

The ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 is given to all ELL students and ELL parent refusals in grades K-12. The ACCESS assesses students English language proficiency. The window for this year's ACCESS testing runs from February 14- April 8th. ESL teachers will communicate specific test dates to the parents of their students later in the winter. Click here to view practice questions and test prep resources.

National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)

The NAEP Assessment will be given to select 8th graders on March 1st. The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) was developed in 1969 to measure student achievement nationally, and is the only nationally representative and continuing assessment of what America's students know and can do in various subject areas. This assessment is administered by the National Center for Education Statistics and student testers are selected at random. Information will be distributed to selected students and their parents in February.

AP Exams (High School)

Advanced Placement testing will take place at the high school during the first two weeks of May. All students enrolled in Advanced Placement courses are expected to sit for the AP exams. Students can begin preparing for their exams by utilizing the resources available to them on the website.

Assessment Results

Start Strong Assessments

This fall Start Strong assessments were administered to students to assess their mastery in ELA (grades 4-9), MA (grades 4-8, Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2), and Science (Grades 5, 9, 12). Student test results will be available to families later this winter.

PSAT/NMSQT (10th and 11th grade)

Beginning December 7th, PSAT/NMSQT testers will be able to access their test results on Students who have never logged into will need to create an account. All juniors should use the credentials they created last year to access their scores. PSAT score reports can be linked to Khan Academy for individualized SAT practice. More information regarding PSAT results and SAT prep will be provided to students by their counselors after the holidays.

Mental Health

The Middle School Welcomes Mental Health Counselor, Ms. Gomez

In November, the Middle School welcomed licensed associate counselor, Ms. Gomez to their team. Ms. Gomez provides individual and group mental health counseling services to select middle school students. If you need assistance with a referral to outside mental health resources or you feel Ms. Gomez's services might be beneficial to your child, reach out to your child's guidance counselor.

Middle School Counselors:

Mental Health and Emergency Resource List

Please see the list below of mental health and emergency resources.

Special Programs

Inclusive Schools Week, December 6-10

Inclusive Schools Week has celebrated the progress that schools have made in providing a supportive and quality education to an increasingly diverse student population, including students who are marginalized due to disability, gender, socio-economic status, cultural heritage, language preference, and other factors. The Week also provides an important opportunity for educators, students and parents to discuss what else needs to be done in order to ensure that their schools continue to improve their ability to successfully educate all children. To celebrate this year, activities that emphasize inclusion will be encouraged in each of our district's schools.

Save the Date for SELebration Week 2022: April 4th to April 8th

This spring we will continue to focus on building our Social Emotional Learning (SEL) skills through a week-long Social Awareness SELebration. The SEL Committee is busy planning lessons, activities and events for this special week. More information will be made available to students and families later in the winter.

Connect & Learn

Family Game Night

Family game nights can be entertaining and educational at the same time. A simple card game, creative round of charades, sleigh riding adventure or paper airplane contest can make for unique opportunities to connect with your children all while fulfilling their need for belongingness. Additional "Connect and Learn" suggestions can be found in the district calendar.

Reading Suggestions for Elementary Students

December is a celebratory time in our schools. Students engage in festive activities, holiday concerts take place and families gear up for some time away from school. To help support your children's reading development during this time, consider a trip to the local library or book store for one of these 14 Books for December Celebrations or one of these children's books that address holidays around the world.

Information for Homeless Families

McKinney Vento Information

The Stewart B. McKinney-Vento Education of Homeless Children and Youth (McKinney-Vento EHCY) program provides homeless students with protections and services to ensure they enroll in and attend school; complete their high school education and be positioned for success after graduation, so they may avoid poverty and homelessness as adults. Of the over 1.3 million children and youth experiencing homelessness in the United States, more than 10,900 homeless children and youth were identified in the state of New Jersey during the 2016-17 school year.

The McKinney-Vento EHCY program ensures homeless children and youth have equal access to a free, appropriate public education and are able to enroll in and attend school. The program funds supplemental academic support services for homeless children and youth to ensure their school success.

Information above shared from the NJDOE website.

If your housing situation has changed recently and you believe your child or dependent may be eligible for McKinney Vento services reach out to our district's homeless liaison Colleen Bodek by emailing

Click here for access to parent/student rights under the McKinney Vento Act.

Did You Know?

Specific state funding, individual college entrance exam fee waivers and individual college application fee waivers are contingent on the submission of your meal application? In order to maintain funding that benefits all of our district's students, we encourage every family to review and complete the lunch application. The application can be found here.