Student success requires a strong partnership between teachers and parents. Both play a critical role in the development of a child, and both are committed to seeing that child grow, learn, and achieve.
In our ongoing efforts at discussing assessment literacy, we wanted to share some thoughts and possible talking points that teachers can use when discussing assessments with parents and students.
Talking about assessment with parents and students is an opportunity to help them understand the role assessment plays in helping their son or daughter learn. It also opens up dialogue on a range of topics, including:
+ The purposes of assessment – some are used to inform instruction, others to help meet state requirements
+ What tests are being used in their child’s classroom and how they differ from each other
+ The child’s learning progress, as indicated by both assessment and classroom observation
+ Academic strengths and weaknesses of the child, and what teacher, parent and child can do to address those weaknesses
+ The testing process and how it impacts the teaching process
Ultimately, assessments can become a tool for establishing a student’s instructional readiness, and monitoring student progress toward learning goals over time, which leads to measuring their academic growth.
Learning requires teamwork, with both the teacher and student equally committed to progress and success. High-quality assessments are useful for helping teachers make instructional decisions, track progress toward goals and communicate with both students and parents.
NWEA has prepared a range of resources to help teachers, principals and other educators communicate effectively with parents. These include:
+ A parent toolkit on the MAP assessment
+ A webpage with additional resources
+ AssessmentLiteracy.org features resources for both parents and students
A single test score does not define student success or effective instruction. But assessment data can be incredibly useful to educators, parents and students alike, helping them improve their teaching, mentoring and learning.