Students in all grades take various forms of assessment throughout the school year, both at the district level and at the state level. These assessments provide valuable information to inform instruction and to track student progress along Common Core State Standards. Assessments are also used to identify student giftedness as well as for language acquisition proficiency.
An interim assessment is administered at different intervals (hence the name) between instruction. The data from interim assessments can be used for several purposes – all of them intended to deliver instructionally useful information to teachers, students, principals, district administrators and parents. Here are some ways educators use interim data:
+ to measure student achievement – where students are starting – and growth over time
+ to identify patterns in learning for particular students or groups of students
+ for principals and district administrators, the data are useful for determining flexible groupings, tracking progress toward critical milestones – for example, are our third graders on track to be fluent readers by the end of the year?; evaluating program impact and predicting outcomes for state accountability tests
+ for parents, interim data can help them understand how their child is progressing, what areas he or she needs extra help in – and where he or she is doing well
State Standardized testing, called the Colorado Measures for Academic Success (CMAS) are administered mid-March through the end of April and covers literacy and math for all 3rd – 5th grades, in addition to Social Studies for 4th grade only (on a three year rotation), and Science for 5th grade only.