Assessment Policy

Philosophy:

At Roosevelt Elementary School we believe that assessment is an ongoing process of collecting and analyzing student data to guide instruction and inform stakeholders.  Assessments need to be reflected upon carefully by teachers, students, and parents.  There should be a variety of ways of assessing students beyond typical paper and pencil quizzes and tests.  Methods of assessment need to involve performance tasks, demonstrations, and product development.  They will often involve real-world skills that encourage collaboration, critical thinking, and problem solving.  We believe assessments should guide students through the five Primary Years Programme (PYP) essential elements of learning:

  • The acquisition of knowledge
  • The understanding of concepts
  • The mastering of skills
  • The development of attitudes
  • The decision to take action

Purpose of Assessment:

At Roosevelt Elementary School the primary purpose of assessment is to improve student learning and provide instructional guidance to the teaching staff.  Assessment informs teachers of what their students already know (prior knowledge), if the students understand and have mastered what has been taught, and which standards need to be retaught.  Teachers use assessment to determine how best to meet their students’ needs.  Students can use their assessment data to discover their strengths and areas of challenge when setting goals for future learning.  Finally, assessment can be used to communicate student progress with parents.

Assessment Tools:

Assessments are varied in type and serve different purposes.  Assessment is both formative and summative.  Students should have many opportunities to show their understanding.  Assessment should be differentiated, and modifications should be made when necessary.  Students should know the criteria for success beforehand and the expectations should be clear.  Assessments should be relevant and appropriate for the concepts or skills being taught.  Feedback needs to be timely, and the results need to be easily understood by students and parents.

Assessments will be varied according to grade level and what is being assessed.  Examples of assessment tools include:

  • Standardized assessments, including those required by the district and state (see attached test calendar)
  • Rubrics
  • Checklists
  • Anecdotal records
  • Formative/summative assessments
  • Writing samples
  • Self-assessments/reflections
  • Response journals
  • Exit slips/quick checks

Practices:

Formative assessments are an integral part of instruction.  Practices related to formative assessment include:

  1. Giving students frequent, descriptive feedback on formative tasks.
  2. Giving students feedback meant to improve performance.
  3. Differentiating instruction.

Summative assessments are used to determine the understanding of standards and/or learning goals.  Practices related to summative assessments include:

  1. Providing opportunities for students to show mastery of skills/concepts.
  2. Gathering information to reflect on teaching practices.

Reporting of student achievement (Grades K-5) occurs formally six times each year that include:

  1. Parent-teacher conferences (fall and winter)
  2. Quarterly standards-based progress reports

Reporting for student achievement for Pre-K occurs formally seven times each year that include:

  1. Two home visits
  2. Parent-teacher conferences (fall and winter)
  3. Three standards-based progress reports

Grade level teachers meet weekly in Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) to discuss, develop, evaluate, and reflect on teaching and learning based on assessment data.

Portfolios:

Portfolios are a collection of student work that shows evidence of learning and progress over time.  Portfolios allow students and parents to see learning as a continuous process and to be active participants in their own learning.  Students will have a pocket folder of artifacts for the time they are enrolled at Roosevelt.  Students will help choose those pieces of evidence that demonstrate products created and/or concepts learned for each transdisciplinary unit.  Artifacts might include written pieces, photographs, or computer-based projects.  They could be formative or summative.  There will be 1-2 pieces per unit.  At the end of each year the portfolio will be forwarded to the next teacher.  Upon completion of fifth grade the students will receive their portfolio pieces to keep.

Exhibition:

At the end of grade five all students will demonstrate their learning through the PYP by applying their learning through a summative comprehensive project within one of the transdisciplinary themes.   The exhibition will occur in the spring and will be open to students, parents, administrators, and the community to attend.  The first exhibition will occur in the year following authorization.

Standards-based Grading:

Kenosha Unified School District implemented a new grading/reporting system in 2013-2014 for students in kindergarten through grade five.  The goal is to have instruction, assessment, and grading that align with daily teaching and learning.  Elementary students and parents receive more information regarding academic achievement and related learning skills.  The district implemented standards-based grading to ensure consistent expectations based on the Common Core State Standards.  The reporting system on the quarterly progress report uses a 4-point rubric as defined by the district.  Work habits are also assessed in the progress report.  Staff members use an electronic gradebook through Infinite Campus as a recording tool.

Implementation and Review:

The Pedagogical Leadership Team accepts the responsibility for ensuring that the assessment policy is put into practice.  Teachers and administrators will communicate the assessment policy to parents, and the library/media staff member will electronically post the policy on our school website.  The leadership team will regularly evaluate the implementation of the assessment policy as evidenced by classroom observation, conferencing, and Professional Learning Community (PLC)/grade level minutes.

Definitions:

  • Assessment — the process of gathering information on student learning from a variety of sources to understand how well students are achieving on identified curriculum expectations.
  • Formative assessment — the process of gathering information during the learning process.  It involves constructive and specific feedback to students aimed to improve learning.
  • Summative assessment – an evaluation tool designed to allow students to demonstrate achievement at the end of a unit, such as a unit of inquiry, chapter test, or math unit.
  • Standards-based grading — the evaluation of what a student should know and be able to do at the end of a given grade level.  Information is made available to students and parents as proficiency statements on the progress report.
  • Professional Learning Community (PLC) – grade level teachers and other staff who meet regularly to use data to determine best practices for instruction based on the needs of their students.