February 5, 2019
The purpose of this letter is to inform you that your student will take the Florida State Assessments in the coming weeks.
Throughout the school year, your child has been instructed on the skills and content assessed on the FSA assessment. As part of the preparation for these assessments, your child will be given an opportunity to participate in a practice test at school to become familiar with the paper-based and/or computer-based testing platform, item types, and response formats he or she will see on the assessments. If you or your student would also like to review the practice tests at home, the practice tests and answer keys are available at:
English Language Arts (Grades 9-10 & Retakes)/FSA Algebra 1/Geometry: http://www.fsassessments.org/students-and-families/practice-tests/paper-based-practice-test-materials/.
NGSSS Biology/US History: http://fl.pearsonaccessnext.com/ (select Practice Tests from the Related Links section in the lower right corner. Then click on the appropriate link, depending on whether you student will receive accommodations per an IEP or 504 plan.
We recommend that you sit with your child to review a practice test, not only to become familiar with the structure of the questions, but also with the test navigation.
The state assessments provide a single snapshot of your child’s knowledge of the content tested. Teachers use this data as well as many other indicators of your child’s learning to inform their instruction of your child.
The Department of Education has asked that we share their testing policies with you. These policies are on the back of this document. Classroom teachers will also review these policies with your student.
If you have any questions about testing administration or testing dates, please do not hesitate to contact a member of our leadership team.
Joseph Torregrasso Ed.D.
For information regarding test session lengths for all Spring 2019 FSA assessments, please visit the FSA Portal at www.fsassessments.org, click on the Students and Families icon, select the Frequently Asked Questions card, then select the question, “How long are the tests?”
Please review the following policies with your student before testing:
- Electronic Devices—Students are not permitted to have any electronic devices, including but not limited to cell phones, smartphones, and smartwatches, at any time during testing OR during breaks (e.g., restroom), even if they are turned off or students do not use them. If your student is found with an electronic device, his or her test will be invalidated.
- Calculators—For EOC assessments, approved calculators may be used during SESSION 2 ONLY. If students have handheld calculators during Session 1, their tests will be invalidated. Four-function calculators will be provided to students for the NGSSS Biology EOC at the time of testing. No other calculators may be used.
- Testing Rules Acknowledgment—All FSA tests include a Testing Rules Acknowledgment that reads, “I understand the testing rules that were just read to me. If I do not follow these rules, my test score may be invalidated.” Prior to testing, test administrators read the rules to students, and students acknowledge that they understand the testing rules by signing below the statement on their testing documents.
- Discussing Test Content after Testing—The last portion of the testing rules read to students before they sign below the Testing Rules Acknowledgment states, “Because the content in all statewide assessments is secure, you may not discuss or reveal details about the test content (including test items, passages and prompts) after the test. This includes any type of electronic communication, such as texting, emailing, or posting online, for example, like Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or Instagram.” Please make sure your student understands that “discussing” test content includes any kind of electronic communication, such as texting, emailing, or posting to social media, etc. While students may not share information about secure test content after testing, this policy is not intended to prevent students from discussing their testing experiences with their parents/families.
- Working Independently—Students are responsible for doing their own work during the test and for protecting their answers from being seen by others. If students are caught cheating during testing, their tests will be invalidated. In addition, the Florida Department of Education (FDOE) employs Caveon Test Security, to analyze student test results to detect unusually similar answer Student tests within a school that are found to have extremely similar answer patterns will have their results invalidated.
- Leaving Campus—If your student begins a test session and leaves campus before completing it (for lunch, an appointment or illness, etc.), he or she will not be allowed to complete that test session. If your student does not feel well on the day of testing, it may be best for him or her to wait and be tested on a make-up day. Please remember not to schedule appointments on testing days.
- Testing Accommodations— If your student has an IEP, Section 504 plan, or is an English Language Learner (ELL), please contact the school to discuss the testing accommodations that will be provided for your student.