The purpose of grading and assessment is to determine student progress based on a given set of criteria or outcomes. Ideally, assessment should involve the student, come from a variety of samples and be used to set learning goals. In a case where the learning is personalized, a teacher will provide the framework and materials for students to have ample opportunities to practice the skill and to demonstrate what they know before they are formally assessed.
Assessment may be:
Diagnostic – measures student accomplishment against a norm referenced test and use the results to identify student prior learning, strengths and areas of need. At times, the province or the Division may require students to complete a test that is designed to show what level a student has achieved.
Formative – occurs as feedback during the learning, to track progress towards an outcome and determine whether further instruction or practice is needed. Students must have time to make mistakes and experience opportunities to improve their practice. Whenever possible, students should be involved in the setting of criteria with regard to how they will be assessed and should know when and how they will be assessed. This practice can be demonstrated in the use of anchor charts and exemplars and in older grades may mean a rubric is supplied and/or created when an assignment is given. Teachers must provide students with opportunities for them to self assess and reflection on their mastery of an outcome and to set goals for improvement and learning.
Summative – when a mark is assigned for a given outcome or an assignment consisting of several outcomes. It is a snapshot of a student’s progress on a given assessment at a given time. Summative assessment should be comprised of a variety of types of assessment (triangulation).
Consistent and fair assessment practices are crucial when setting up a personalized learning plan for students. Teachers must provide students with exemplars and enlist students in co-constructing criteria for assessment.
The following tools are being employed in Sun West to incorporate effective assessment techniques in personalized learning:
- To collect and report student progress on outcomes
- Track attendance/lates and assignments
- Provides parents with an opportunity for ongoing information about their child’s attendance and progress
- Report end of term final scores to the Ministry of Education
- Database of student achievement on provincial/Division assessments
- Tracking of intervention and progress
- Provides Division, school, classroom and student progress reports
- Digital platform for student support plans and electronic Inclusion and Intervention Plans (eIIPs)
- Tracking and sharing of referrals and assessments
- Monitor progress in support services (school visits, referrals, support plans)
- Violent Risk Threat Assessment (VRTA) forms and tracking
Student Portfolios (SeeSaw, FreshGrade)
- Showcase student achievement and demonstrate student achievement and progress
- Communication tool with parents and students
- Move from print to digital reporting of student work and progress
- Involve students in their learning and goal setting in a meaningful way
- Increase student/parent engagement and knowledge
- Students able to monitor their progress
- Outcomes based assessment
- Common assessments across Division and province to assist with assessment and consistency
- Digital and print reporting of student progress
- Use of portfolios as a communication tool (print and digital)
- Use of data to inform instruction
- Common Student Information System (SIS) – PowerSchool/PowerTeacher/Pearson Inform
- Common report cards – K-9
- PowerSchool Parent Portal use in all schools
- Student led conferences
- Eventual elimination of report card as an “event” and replaced by continuous reporting through FreshGrade, Power School PowerSchool Parent Portal
- Creation of common assessment banks
- Creation of Moodle about assessment basics
- Alignment of Division assessment schedule with provincial assessment
- Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA) alignment and continued use in individualized reading instruction plans
- Implementation of provincial writing rubrics and exemplars
- Implementation of provincial math rubrics and exemplars