This website is constructed for the purpose of assisting numerous district stakeholders in making informed educational decisions. The compilation of data has been carefully crafted to represent all aspects of education in Pleasanton schools.
Comprehensive Assessment System
No single assessment can provide all the necessary information to make fully informed curriculum and instruction decisions. A comprehensive assessment system, however, can provide useful data to assist the decision-making process. The following guiding principles are considered critical factors in the analysis of assessment data:
- Assessments are an integral part of the instruction.
- Using multiple indicators of assessment to evaluate success is essential.
- Collecting and maintaining quality assessment data is important.
- Emphasizing comparison of assessment data from year to year rather than from school to school is the centerpiece of our improvement.
- Communication of assessment data helps make informed decisions.
Tests Evaluated for Assessments
Pleasanton Unified School District’s assessment system includes a number of different tests used for a variety of purposes:
- Census tests are those taken by all students. They include:
- California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) in English and math for grades 10th-12th was suspended effective January 1, 2016.
- Due to the change in academic standards, Senate Bill 172 (Liu) was signed by the Governor to suspend the administration of the CAHSEE and the requirement that students pass the CAHSEE to receive a high school diploma for the 2015, 2016-17, and 2017-18 school years. The law required that schools grant a diploma to any pupil who completed grade twelve in the 2003-04 school year or a subsequent school year and met all applicable graduation requirements other than the passage of the high school exit examination. The law further required the State Superintendent of Public Instruction to convene an advisory panel to provide recommendations to the Superintendent on the continuation of the high school exit examination and on alternative pathways to satisfy the high school graduation requirements pursuant to Education Code sections 51224.5 and 51225.3. The law became effective on January 1, 2016.
- California English Language Development Test (CELDT) measures students in kindergarten through grade twelve whose home language is not English are required by law to be assessed in English language proficiency (ELP). In California, the ELP assessment is the CELDT.
- The CELDT allows schools to identify students who need to improve their skills in listening, speaking, reading, and writing in English. Schools also give the test each year to students who are still learning English.
- Physical Fitness Testing (PFT) for students in California schools is the FITNESSGRAM. The main goal of the test is to help students in starting life-long habits of regular physical activity.
- Students in grades five, seven, and nine take the fitness test. The test has six parts that show a level of fitness that offer a degree of defense against diseases that come from inactivity. The test results can be used by students, teachers, and parents.
- The California Healthy Kids Survey (CHKS) and School Climate Survey (SCS) provides a comprehensive, data-driven, decision-making process to guide efforts to improve school climate, learning supports, and engagement, as well as identify and increase quality of health, prevention, and youth development programs.
- District Benchmark Assessments
- Insure that instruction across the District is aligned to the adopted Common Core State Standards and standards based core curriculum.
- Inform teachers and administrators about student progress and effectiveness of instruction and materials.
- Provide dis-aggregated student performance data to teachers and administrators to make decisions that will improve teaching and learning.
- Assist in the monitoring of individual student progress in the core academic curriculum.
- Provide data to identify under-served students who need interventions and support services .
- Illuminate Data and Assessment (DnA) is a system for collecting, creating, scoring and reporting of formative, and benchmark assessments, analyzes state mandated assessments and progress monitoring of student achievement that is aligned to Common Core State Standards (CCSS). It helps school districts meet the state and federal testing and reporting requirements, empowers teachers to modify instruction based on assessment results, and provides data that school and district administrators can use to plan appropriate professional development and support.
- Other Assessments
- College Board Exams
- Group tests are those taken by a particular group of students. They include Advanced Placement (AP) Exams and the college entrance tests (e.g., PSAT, SAT, ACT).
- Please note that our Student Services Department oversees PSAT/NMSQT, SAT, and ACT.
The purpose of assessments in Pleasanton Unified School District are many-fold and multi-layered. The staff uses assessment data not only to monitor continuous student progress and identify the areas of improvement, but also to measure the effectiveness of teaching strategies, measure the progress made towards meeting district and state standards, plan strategies and set goals for future, as well as evaluate the implementation of the annual strategic planning goals.