“The purpose of quality student assessment is to help students learn! And teachers teach!”
I love this quote that is found on the website of our assessment partner, the Northwest Evaluation Association. It truly demonstrates how quality evaluation can enhance a student’s overall educational experience, while providing teachers with the information they need to best assist your students’ education.
This year, our sixth partnering with NWEA, AISM continues to use the Measures of Academic Progress assessment to ensure that your students are making measurable growth.
This afternoon, your students’ MAP results will be sent home with them. When reviewing and discussing your students’ progress, please keep in mind:
- MAP tests are individualized measures of performance in Reading, and Math. Tests are taken on the computer, and the results help teachers, parents, and administrators improve learning for all students. The results help us work together to make informed decisions that promote your students’ academic growth.
- MAP tests are adaptive, which means that the test is designed to target each student’s academic performance. These assessments are tailored to each student’s current achievement level. The computer adjusts the difficulty level of the questions as the test progresses. Therefore, each student takes a unique test. The assessment also has a standard deviation variable, which lets us know if the student is “disengaged”, and if the test results are valid and reliable.
- As per the chart below, the goal of the Measure of Academic Progress assessment is to measure “growth over time”, and also to ensure “quality control.” Next Trimester, we will be able to compare our academic program to not just U.S.-based schools, but to other schools in our association (Association of International Schools in Africa – AISA), and to other U.S. State Department-Assisted Schools (A/OS).
- As parents, and as teachers, our primary focus is on the “blue” line, which shows your student’s individual growth. Students’ growth per grade level is also captured in the chart below.
A few years ago, when the school faced external challenges caused by a regional health crisis, I shared the school’s academic performance with the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) that produces our Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) assessment; they responded as follows:
“Your positive message about your students’ academic success has reminded me of why we cherish our profession, but more importantly, it reaffirms that anything is possible and achievable. Even in the most challenging situations … by placing students first, and making informed “real time” data-driven decisions, our students’ academic growth knows no limit.”
For community members joining our program this year, I just want to send a quick reminder that this approach is not new. Multi-grade mastery-based planning has been used widely in International Schools for over a decade, and provides more fluidity to meet each student’s needs. The American International School of Monrovia has furthered the multi-age mastery-based flexible grouping system by having students working in various clusters in English and Math.
Over the next two week, for the small percent of students who did not achieve the desired growth, we will be working with them to try to identify the answers to crucial questions such as: what have our students learned? What are their present learning triumphs and challenges? And, what do we – as a learning community – need to put in place to set our students up for success?