Please be aware of the assessment dates listed below by grade and please make sure your children are present during these days, as it is very challenging to reschedule. 
  • April 24-28: All grades — MARS Math Assessment
  • May 2-11: Grades 5-8 — CAASPP
  • May 8-18: Grades 3/4 — CAASPP
  • May 15-19: Grades 5 & 8 — CAST (in Science class)

Why Assessments are Important for WES
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State and District Assessments and Testing

Soon, we will begin MARS and CAASPP testing.  We have learned that quite a few students are requesting to their parents, for a variety of reasons, that they want to “opt-out” from taking the upcoming assessments.   

I cannot emphasize enough how important the CAASPP test is to the overall success of our school. 

While parents do have the right to opt their child out of testing, under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the federal government may withhold funding to states that dip below the 95% threshold and is encouraging states to create their own sanctions on local districts. In response to this, if schools do not meet the state-required 95% participation rate on the CAASPP, California may assign every student who did not take the CAASPP the lowest possible score by default, which skews our data and reports greatly as a district.
In addition to the fact that this test is mandated, it is useful and important to our school in a variety of ways. The CAASPP test provides an opportunity to measure the skills of all students against the academic standards of the state and other local districts. This information helps WESD to plan out curriculum, supports, instruction, and resources to support student learning and to continue to provide the targeted, high-quality instruction that we are known for. Additionally, student participation and performance on the state tests directly contribute to our school’s academic performance accountability measures on the California Dashboard. The county and the state look at our academic performance indicators as a way to determine our school's progress each year. These factors also influence our ability to receive awards and accolades, such as the CA Distinguished School Award.
As your child prepares for the testing season, we hope that you will consider the ways in which your child's participation will benefit our students and school in the years to come.