Testing supports available for students learning English

students do work at computers
Photo courtesy SFUSD

By Richard Swerdlow
SFUSD Achievement Assessments Office

Students in SFUSD, along with all California students, take a state test at the end of each school year to demonstrate how much they’ve learned. The California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) program uses two assessments for English language arts and Math - either the Smarter Balanced assessments or California Alternate Assessments for some students with disabilities. Students in grades 5, 8 and High School also take a Science assessment.

But whichever test they take, every CAASPP test is designed so that all students in grades 3-8 and 11 — including students who speak limited English — can meaningfully participate and demonstrate what they know and can do.

Students learning English can take advantage of many optional resources, such as an English dictionary, Spanish translations, glossaries provided in 10 languages, and translated test directions in 19 languages. Resources are embedded (part of the computer) or non-embedded (provided by the school, such as a dictionary in book form).

The following Smarter Balanced supports are often recommended for students learning English. (Click here to see a list of Smarter Balanced supports for students learning English.) Families can use this list as reference to discuss these testing supports with your child’s teacher.