CSA moves to MAP Growth Testing
Putting Tests at the Service of Students and Teachers
Our schools have a demanding educational culture that helps students from across the academic spectrum reach their God-given potential. In order for students to grow academically teachers need to know where students are thriving and where they are struggling. Teachers use many methods, including tests, to assess student achievement. Tests can be a powerful tool if they provide accurate and timely feedback.
It is vital that the standardized test our schools use is effective in measuring student learning and growth. To that end, the Catholic Schools Office established a committee of principals and teachers to review the various assessment tools that are currently available. The committee established criteria, researched testing vendors, and invited four testing vendors to present to the committee. Based on the committee’s recommendation the Catholic Schools Office and the Diocese of Fall River’s Central Board of Catholic School Education have decided to contract with the MAP Growth assessment as the new standard assessment.
MAP Growth provides the following benefits to students and teachers:
- Computer adaptive and browser based meaning no more paper and pencil and quicker reporting.
- The test sessions take approximately 30 minutes to complete, can be paused, have no time limits, and offer a proctor screen for the teacher administering the test.
- Testing in the fall, winter, and spring, allows teachers to make real time adjustment to address student growth.
- Interim assessments with progress monitoring tools between testing sessions.
- Includes Math, Reading, Language usage (all Grades K-12), and science (Grades 3-8).
- The content and skills of the assessments are based on MA state standards (and NextGen standards for science).
- Reports connect individual student scores to learning outcomes, domains, and MA state standards so teachers can personalize learning for each student.
- Teachers can use the assessment tool to set goals with students, report on progress between testing sessions, and use MAP Skills to check progress on certain standards or domains.
- The results are connected with a variety of free instructional resources from reputable agencies like Khan Academy, Engage NY, and Odysseyworks to name a few.
The work that Bill Milot, Director of Technology, has done over the past year to upgrade each schools’ Wi-Fi infrastructure ensures that are schools are prepared to move to a computer based assessment. Professional development on how to effectively use MAP data for school leaders and teachers will start this summer.
Matthew Bourque, Principal of St. Mary’s Catholic School, and Testing Committee chair stated:
“Our committee wanted to find assessments that would give teachers immediate, actionable feedback so they could better meet the needs of students. I also hoped that we would find something that would reflect some more recent shifts in education – more intentional use of technology, a shift towards mastery and personalization, and a focus on measuring growth and individual student progress. MAP Growth gives us all that and more. I’m excited to use the assessments with my teachers because they will be able to use the MAP assessment data to work more closely with individual students and to set goals together for growth and progress.”
We appreciate the time and work that the Testing Committee members dedicated to this process!