District Assessment System

MSAD 15 uses a variety of summative assessments across the district to measure student growth and proficiency as well as to inform curricular and instructional programming decisions. These summative assessments are administered to students at different points in their academic career. Results of these assessments are used in many ways including at the individual student level, classroom level, school level, and district-wide. In addition to these summative-type assessments, students across the district participate in informal assessment (or formative assessment). These informal assessments occur with less consistency district-wide as they are tailored to the needs of the individual student, grade-level, or subject. This document is designed to summarize the comprehensive summative assessment system in which virtually every MSAD 15 students will participate:

 

Development Reading Assessment (DRA) The DRA is an assessment that is administered individually to students to measure a student’s reading proficiency. This tool is used to identify a student’s reading level, accuracy, fluency, and comprehension. It is an assessment that is given across the country with grade-level benchmarks set nationally. The results are used by teachers and schools to identify students who may need additional instruction, to measure student academic growth, and to measure student proficiency in reading. The assessment results are used by schools and the district to inform writing curriculum and instruction decision-making. DRA takes varying amounts of time depending on reading level and is administered at least three times per year.
District-Wide Writing Prompt The district-wide writing prompt is a locally developed assessment for writing. The assessment is designed to measure student proficiency and growth in writing. The assessments are double-blind scored by teachers across the district. The results are used by teachers and schools to identify students who may need additional instruction, to measure student academic growth, and to measure student proficiency in writing. The assessment results are used by schools and the district to inform writing curriculum and instruction decision-making. The writing prompt takes approximately 90 minutes across multiple sessions and is administered twice per year.
Learning Without Tears Formerly known as Handwriting without Tears, this assessment is a screener tool used to identify all early childhood learning skills such as color and shape identification, letters and letter sounds, counting and numbers. These assessments take 10-15 minutes and are generally administered three times per year.
Maine Education Assessment (MEA) The MEA is Maine’s implementation of the federal education accountability assessment. There are MEA assessments for reading, mathematics, and science. The assessment is intended to inform parents, students, and educators regarding performance in the curricular objectives of the Maine Learning Results and Common Core State Standards. Results are used by teachers for curriculum and instructional design, planning, and monitoring. Results are reported to the general public by the Maine Department of Education. The state is currently using NWEA (more info below) as the state assessment for math and reading in grades 3-8 and 11. That assessment is administered online three times per year. The MEA science, called “ADAM”, is administered in grades 5, 8, and 11 once per year in the spring.
Northwest Education Assessment (NWEA) The NWEA is an adaptive diagnostic assessment used for reading, writing, and mathematics. It is an assessment that is given across the country with nationally normed results. The assessment is intended to help identify students who may need additional instruction, to measure student academic growth, and to measure student proficiency in reading, mathematics and writing. Results are used by teachers for instructional design, planning, and monitoring. Students have as much time as they need for the assessment, though students generally don’t need more than an hour. NWEA is given two or three times per year

 

Grade Level English Language Arts Mathematics Science
Pre-Kindergarten Learning Without Tears Learning Without Tears
Kindergarten DIAL-4 for K Entry
Developmental Reading Assessment
Northwest Education Assessment

District-Wide Writing Prompt
Kindergarten Trimester Screeners
DIAl-4 K Entry
Northwest Education Assessment
Grade 1 Developmental Reading Assessment
Northwest Education Assessment
District-Wide Writing Prompt
Northwest Education Assessment
Grade 2 Developmental Reading Assessment
Northwest Education Assessment
District-Wide Writing Prompt
Northwest Education Assessment
Grade 3 Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment
District-Wide Writing Prompt
Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment
Grade 4 Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment
District-Wide Writing Prompt
Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment
Grade 5 Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment Maine Educational Assessment – Science (ADAM)
Grade 6 Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment
Grade 7 Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment
Grade 8 Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment Maine Educational Assessment – Science (ADAM)
Grade 9 Northwest Education Assessment Northwest Education Assessment
Grade 10 Northwest Education Assessment Northwest Education Assessment
Grade 11 Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment Northwest Education Assessment/Maine Educational Assessment Maine Educational Assessment – Science (ADAM)

 

Progress Monitoring
Students who struggle to make academic progress participate in Response to Intervention, a tiered systems of supports and interventions to help student accelerate progress towards grade-level benchmarks. As part of this work, monitoring progress of students is essential and requires assessment beyond the standard district assessment system. Current measures used to inform progress of students include the following:

 

Grades K-2 Easy Curriculum Based Measures (EasyCBM)
Grades 3-4 Easy Curriculum Based Measures (EasyCBM)
Diagnostic Reading Assessment (DRA)
Read Naturally assessment tools
Dreambox assessment tools
Grades 5-8 NWEA Measures of Academic Progress Skills (MAP Skills)

MSAD 15 utilizes all assessment data to help inform our practices at the district, school, classroom and individual levels for our students.  Although we encourage students and parents to participate fully in our assessment program, it is important to note that parents/guardians may opt their child out of state testing.  If you are interested in doing so, please reach out to your child’s principal to make this request in writing.

Updated March 17, 2022