TALB/CTA believes in testing and assessment systems that support learning and promote students' positive self-image and should include:
- Education standards specifying what students should know and be able to do should be clearly defined before assessment procedures and exercises are developed.
- The primary purpose of the assessment systems should be to assist both educators and policymakers in improving instruction and advancing student learning.
- Assessment standards, tasks, procedures, and uses should be fair to all students regardless of economic, cultural, and/or linguistic differences.
- Assessment exercises or tasks should be valid and appropriate representations of the standards students are expected to achieve.
- Assessment results and statistical data should be reported in the context of other relevant information.
- Teachers should be involved in designing and using the assessment system.
- Assessment procedures and results should be understandable.
- Assessment systems should be subject to ongoing review and improvement and correlate with local curricular goals and objectives.
- When new assessment procedures are adopted by a/the district, resources should be available for teacher training.
- Students whose primary language is other than/not English should not be given state mandated assessments until such tests are available in their primary languages or until fluency is attained in English. It is the responsibility of the State Department of Education to provide the state mandated assessments in the child's primary language.
- Multiple measures should be used to assess students with special needs, specifically in relation to the student's individual goals and objectives on their IEP. Accommodations and modifications to require district and/or state assessments should be made specific to individual student needs and should be defined in detail in IEP. Students should be allowed any accommodation that will help them demonstrate mastery of statewide content standards.
TALB/CTA further believes that students need adequate instruction time as well as appropriate time set aside for testing. Therefore, TALB/CTA recommends:
- Testing of students should not detract from time allotted for the delivery of required curriculum or cause a negative impact on student's academic performance.
- Time, format and instructions must be developmentally appropriate.