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Smarter Balanced Assessments

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Dear Barre City Families,

As a member of the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, Vermont has joined with many other states to develop this test for English Language Arts/Literacy and Mathematics. The SBAC test (as it is called) is fully aligned with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and it uses state of the art computer adaptive testing and accessibility technologies.

The Smarter Balanced summative tests are not timed.  However, the total time students will be involved in the testing is estimated to be around 8 hours.  This will be spread out across several days.  The new tests employ a variety of innovations, including the following:

  • All testing is administered using a secure online assessment system that includes a variety of tools and technology enhanced test questions.
  • Foremost among the new technologies is Computer Adaptive Testing or CAT. CAT adjusts the level of difficulty of the test questions for each student, depending on the accuracy of the child’s responses.  This adaptive testing will produce more precise results in less time than the last generation of pencil and paper tests.
  • The assessment also includes many accessibility tools for special populations – features such as read aloud, color and contrast choices, expandable reading passages, key word translation glossaries, American Sign Language translation, Braille, and many others.
  • Because the test is administered on the computer, results will be returned to the schools very quickly. We can expect school scores by early July, and individual students’ scores before that.

To learn more about Smarter Balanced, log on to the VT Smarter Balanced Assessment Portal where you will find additional information for students and families, as well as practice tests that will allow you to try out the test students will be taking this spring.

Please note that Vermont’s test delivery system uses state of the art security features that will protect our student’s privacy, and will adhere to all federal and state confidentiality regulations, including but not limited to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

For more information or questions feel free to contact the Director of Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment, Jackie Tolman at 802-476-5011 ext. 1011 or email jtolmbsu@u61.net