Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress—English Learners


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Will an English language arts/literacy (ELA) test still be generated for English learners (ELs) identified in the Test Operations Management System (TOMS)?
Yes; students identified as ELs in TOMS will still be assigned the ELA test unless the local educational agency (LEA) California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) coordinator or the CAASPP test site coordinator has indicated the student is eligible for (1) a one-time exemption because he or she has been enrolled in a U.S. school for fewer than 12 months as determined on or after April 15 of the previous school year, or (2) the alternate assessment as specified in the student’s individualized education program (IEP). For more information, see the “Student Test Settings” chapter of the Test Operations Management System (TOMS) Pre-Administration Guide for CAASPP Testing.
Can exempt ELs take ELA components?
Yes; ELs who are technically exempt can still take the ELA assessment upon request by the student’s parent/guardian. The LEA CAASPP coordinator or the CAASPP test site coordinator must ensure that the student is registered for the assessment in TOMS, if necessary (in the case of the California Alternate Assessment for ELA), and that the student’s demographic data in the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System are configured appropriately.
Which entry date into the U.S. school system determines if an EL needs to take the ELA test?
Pursuant to California Code of Regulations, Title 5, Education, Section 850(v), a recently arrived English learner is one who is in his or her first 12 months of attending school in the U.S. as determined on or after April 15 of the previous school year.
Do all ELs have access to the designated supports (e.g., text-to-speech)?

The language access needs of ELs are addressed through the provision of numerous universal tools and designated supports. These include English dictionaries for full writes, English glossaries, and translated test directions and glossaries.

Text-to-speech is available as a designated support to all students (including ELs) for whom an adult or team has indicated it is needed for mathematics and ELA items (but not ELA reading passages). Text-to-speech for ELA reading passages is available for an EL in all grades only if the student has an IEP or Section 504 plan because it is an accommodation. For text-to-speech to be available to an EL, it must be entered into TOMS.

Will schools be able to select a Spanish version of the Student Score Report for all their students at once?
Spanish-language Student Score Reports can be requested via batch upload in TOMS. See the "File Uploads" chapter in the TOMS Pre-Administration Guide for CAASPP Testing for instructions.
If the Spanish report is selected, will the students receive it in both English and Spanish?

Educational Testing Service will provide printed versions of both the English and Spanish Student Score Reports when an LEA requests the Spanish-language Student Score Report. Both versions will be provided in the reports shipment to the LEA CAASPP coordinator; the Spanish version should be distributed to parents/guardians and the English version should be distributed to the school.

The Spanish version will be collated with the English version and will be placed immediately after the student’s English-language Student Score Report.

A PDF file containing the English versions of Student Score Reports and one containing the Spanish versions will be available for download in TOMS.

Is there an additional charge for the Student Score Report in Spanish?
There is no additional charge for the Spanish-language Student Score Report.
What are the testing requirements for ELs cumulatively enrolled for less than 12 months (e.g., the student disenrolled from and then re-enrolled in a U.S. school)?

All students in grades three through eight and grade eleven must participate in the Smarter Balanced assessment in mathematics. Participation in the California Science Test field test is required for all students in grades five, eight, and twelve as well as the identified students in grades ten and eleven, with the exception of eligible students who will take the California Alternate Assessment for Science Pilot 2.

Students are exempt from taking Smarter Balanced assessments in ELA in their first year enrolled, defined as having enrolled after April 15 of the prior year. LEAs can administer the Smarter Balanced assessment in ELA to EL students enrolled less than 12 months, but it will not be counted for accountability. The California Spanish Test, given in grades three through high school, is an optional Spanish language arts test available for students who want a measure their Spanish reading, writing mechanics, and listening skills.