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Comprehensive Statewide Assessment Systems: A Framework for the Role of the State Education Agency in Improving Quality and Reducing Burden

In October 2014, CCSSO and the Council of the Great City Schools (CGCS) committed to evaluate and improve the quality and quantity of student assessments in public schools. CCSSO and CGCS jointly released Commitments on High-Quality Assessments which is a set of principles to guide state leaders and district leaders in making sure every assessment administered is high-quality, coherent, and meaningful to students, parents and teachers. CCSSO committed to increase the transparency of state assessment systems by publishing an easily accessible list of state assessments, evaluate state assessment systems for quality and coherence, work with educational stakeholders to eliminate redundant assessments, and partner with school districts to review their benchmark and formative assessments. Since then, 39 states have taken action to review their assessment systems to determine opportunities for test reduction.

This resource is intended to support and guide state leaders as they determine the state's role, evaluate their state assessment systems and move towards a comprehensive high-quality assessment system.  Throughout this resource, state efforts towards high-quality assessments are highlighted and key action steps are described in detail.  States reviewing their assessment systems should consider these key actions:

  • Define the goal and determine the state's role
  • Get the facts
  • Involve the community
  • Move from data collection to evaluation
  • Make recommendations and implement them
  • Communicate early and often 

For questions or comments please contact Katie Carroll.

Contact:KatieĀ Carrollkatie.carroll@ccsso.org202-312-6434