UPDATED: Delaware Legislators Not Given Testing Schedule For Smarter Balanced Test!

Smarter Balanced Assessment

Updated, 9/11/14, 2:06 pm: Based on recent information obtained by Kavips, and a commenter on this very article, the Fall Smarter Balanced Interim is optional and at the discretion of the school districts.  When I saw this information, I was actually looking at accommodations for students with disabilities.  The schedule I saw just happened to be on there.  I reached out to a few legislators on this, and none of them were aware of there even being a possibility of a Fall interim test, so obviously they weren’t given the schedule either.  The calendar can be found here: http://www.doe.k12.de.us/assessment/files/2014-2015_DeSSA-Calender.pdf

I apologize for any concern this may have created, but I would also let the DOE know that if they are going to put links up with this type of information, they need to be consistent across the board.  I’m sure I’m not the only parent who has seen this and had questions about it.  Based on this, I have changed the title to “Delaware Legislators Not Given Testing Schedule For Smarter Balanced Test” instead of “Breaking News: Delaware Legislators Lied To About Smarter Balanced Test”. 

I still think House Bill 334 should be repealed, simply on the basis that the Federal Government bought the tests from Pearson and the SBA Consortium, and then “gave” it to the states.   The US Government is not supposed to interfere with public education, and they have been doing that non-stop for a long time now.  I will never change my mind on that!


Delaware Legislators were not given the testing schedule when they voted on the bill, according to a few legislators, therefore they were not aware of a fall interim Smarter Balance test.  And if they didn’t know about it, they would not have known it was optional according to recently found schedules on the DOE website.  given false information about the Common Core dictated Smarter Balanced Assessment which affected their vote.  In a shocking look at the Accessibility Guidelines Inclusion document released by the Delaware Department of Education it clearly indicates there will be two testing windows for the Smarter Balanced Assessment, but the legislators were promised it was a once a year test.  Many legislators indicated they voted for it because parents were tired of tests given to students more than once during a school year.

In this link, http://de.portal.airast.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/DeSSA-Accessibility-Guidelines_Inclusion_5-14.pdf it shows there will be two SBA tests, an interim test in the fall, and the main one in the Spring.  Page 8 of the document, which shows when the tests will be administered, clearly shows a Fall interim test.

Table 1. Delaware’s System of Student Assessments in English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies (2014-15 School year) Name of Assessment Content Area Time of Year Grade levels
Smarter Interim ELA-Reading Fall 3-8 & 11
ELA-Listening Fall 3-8 & 11
ELA-Writing Fall 3-8 & 11
Mathematics Fall 3-8 & 11
To Be Determined ELA Fall 9 & 10
To Be Determined Mathematics Fall 9 & 10
Smarter ELA-Reading Spring 3-8 & 11
ELA-Listening Spring 3-8 & 11
ELA-Writing Spring 3-8 & 11
Mathematics Spring 3-8 & 11

As recently as last week, one Delaware legislator, who wished to remain anonymous, said he voted for HB 334 because he thought the kids would only be tested once.  He said many other legislators listened to their constituents and voted for what they wanted.  House Bill 334 passed the DE House of Representatives fairly easily, but the Senate was another story.  The bill failed when it was first voted on, by a 9-12 vote.  But Governor Markell sent his team in and told the Senate it didn’t matter how they voted because the governor would use executive power to make sure the test was going to happen.  Four Republican Senators flip-flopped on their original vote, and Smarter Balanced officially replaced DCAS as the state standardized test.

If the legislators were given false information which swayed the vote, then the vote should be repealed.  While the 147th Assembly ended on July 1st, they can still meet in emergency session.  Even any reps who may have lost in yesterday’s primaries are still elected officials until January 2015.  Parents need to call their representatives and senators and demand House Bill 334 is repealed based on false information being given to them about their children’s testing schedules.  because the Smarter Balanced Assessment just plain sucks and a legislator couldn’t make heads or tails of it when he took it.

Teacher accountability and effectiveness is also being measured by the test, so that bill should also be as well, which was passed around the same time.

Updated with link to House Bill 334 and what was passed by both the Delaware House of Representatives and Senate: http://legis.delaware.gov/LIS/lis147.nsf/vwLegislation/HB+334/$file/legis.html?open

The part of the bill which indicates the amount of testing tells the tale:

This bill provides for the transition of the statewide student assessment system, the Delaware Comprehensive Student Assessment (DCAS), to the Smarter Balanced Assessment System (Smarter). Specifically, the bill removes references to multiple assessments

What Is the Real Cost of Federally-funded Common Core Tests?


How can anyone still support this idiotic curriculum and the even more stupid tests? The Vega was very popular too until it actually came out.

Diane Ravitch's blog

This report from the Pew Charitable Trusts says that many states are reconsidering the costs of Common Core testing, and a small number have withdrawn from participation in the two federally-funded tests, PARCC or Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium.

“But as controversy over the Common Core has challenged some states’ commitment to the standards, a number of states have decided to withdraw from PARCC or Smarter Balanced or to use alternative tests, raising questions about the cost of the tests and the long-term viability of the multistate testing groups, which received $360 million in federal grants to develop the tests. The federal grants will end this fall, and it is unclear whether the testing groups will continue past that point.

“What gets tested is what gets taught,” said Joan Herman, co-director emeritus of the National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards and Student Testing at UCLA. “To the extent that the…

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