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What are Assessments Good for?

Assessment-Evaluation-Testing-Progress Monitoring-Summative-Formative-whatever we call it, it comes down to providing educational data about your child. Unfortunately, placement, services, goals, and even a child’s educational experience can be based on “one” standardized test score. There are many factors that contribute to the outcome of each test a child is administered, and it is unfair to make such important decisions based on the outcome of one test-yet, it happens all the time! While this proves beneficial for children who are great test takers, well informed educators know there are many other ways children show their potential, resiliency, and academic knowledge that are not reflected in a simple test score.

Assessments have a place in our children’s education, and can be purposeful. One assessment should not be used as final determining criteria for eligibility. Educational teams need to be intentional when assessing students. Educational teams should declare what additional data is needed in order to help them best address the student’s educational needs.

As parents, it’s important to understand why the child is being assessed (or tested), what the scores mean, and how the information can help shape an educational plan for your child. It is important to understand what our children know and are able to do in order to build goals, both long term and short term, that are specific to their needs. We would be happy to help you interpret the results of your child’s assessments and suggest appropriate goals, accommodations or modifications for the school setting. Albert Einstein once said, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” Reach out- we can help!

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