Building Educator Assessment Literacy to Inform and Improve Teaching and Learning
College and career readiness standards represent a shift in what students are expected to know and be able to do to be globally competitive. Performance assessment is a key tool in measuring these competencies. Because performance assessment yields insights into students’ knowledge and skills that cannot be elicited with multiple-choice questions, it can support improved teaching and learning, but this opportunity is lost when teachers do not understand the test’s design or the demands it places on both students and teachers. The Building Educator Assessment Literacy (BEAL) project was designed to ensure that educators can make the most of summative performance tasks. BEAL participants learn from real tasks, scoring and discussing actual student responses, in order to make connections between performance assessment and their own teaching. Session participants will learn about the BEAL model and consider the impact of this approach on teaching, learning, and policy decisions.
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Jessica Arnold is a project director on national teacher professional development efforts in support of the Common Core State Standards and next-generation assessments. She authored “Making the Most of Performance Tasks” and led national efforts to expand IB program participation in Title I schools.
Marci Perry serves the 80 districts and multiple charter-school organizations that comprise the District Assessment & Accountability Network. She is an LACOE representative to the Regional Assessment Network.
Since March 2015, LACOE has sponsored BEAL sessions for more than 1,300 classroom teachers and instructional coaches, focused on strengthening teachers’ assessment literacy. BEAL participants are equipped to use Smarter Balanced performance task items and rubrics to strengthen classroom practice.
Deb Sigman’s experience in education policy, assessment, and professional development and her leadership at district, state, and national levels provide a unique ability to convey the importance of connecting performance assessment and examination of student work to improved teaching and learning.