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Superintendent Vitti gives teachers something to be thankful for

This was in our school mailboxes today:

M E M O R A N D U M November 21, 2012
TO: All Employees
Duval County Public Schools
FROM: Dr. Nikolai P. Vitti, Superintendent
Duval County Public Schools

SUBJECT: REDUCTION OF DISTRICT ASSESSMENTS
Please be advised that after hearing the resounding concerns of teachers, students, parents, administrators, and other stakeholders regarding the high frequency and duplication of district testing, I thoroughly reviewed the 2012-2013 testing calendar and determined that the following assessments will be discontinued effective Monday, November 26, 2012:

  • Reading, Math, and Science Progress Monitoring Assessments (PMAs)
  • Pre-test Learning Schedule Assessments (LSAs)
  • Professional Learning Community Assessments
  • Read 180: SRI Assessments
  • Developmental Reading Assessments (DRAs)
  • District Writing Prompt #3
  • District Writing Prompt #4 (with the exception of grades 4, 8, and 10 and administered one week earlier)
  • District elementary, middle, and high school Reading Interim Assessments

The Florida Assessments for Instruction in Reading (FAIR) results will be used to satisfy state progress monitoring requirements. The elimination of the identified assessments is taking place as part of an effort to maximize instructional time and minimize the disruption caused by frequent testing. All remaining district assessments on the testing calendar will remain unchanged until further review and alternative options can be determined.

We will work together over the spring and summer to restore stakeholder confidence in the district’s assessment system by developing more reliable, aligned, and effective assessments for reading, mathematics, science, writing, and End of Course Exams.

As you know, progress monitoring is an essential component to ensuring high quality instruction, intervention, and differentiation. However, we cannot create an environment in our classrooms where we are testing for the sake of testing, especially when doing so undermines teaching and learning. Despite everyone’s desire for “better data,” we must demonstrate prudence and maintain a balance between teaching/learning and assessing. This will occur once we revamp our assessment system for the 2013-2014 school year.
As always, please send me your questions, concerns, and solutions regarding this matter.  

Wow, we may have something here friends...

1 comment:

  1. I love this! How much money are we saving? I was in the classroom for the past 2 years and I'm so glad to see that our kids will spend more time learning and less time testing!!!

    ReplyDelete