DESCRIPTIONS AND PURPOSE
Advanced Placement (AP) Tests: These tests are developed by the College Board and cost approximately $86 per test. In-house scholarships are available for qualifying students. Only AP tests are administered for which a course is offered. Teachers who teach AP courses attend specialized training. Students who score a three (3) or better can usually receive college credit for the course. Students should check with their counselor to see if the college or university they plan to attend will accept AP scores for college credit. An annual report of AP testing is provided to each campus that participates.
American College Test (ACT): This is one of two nationally accepted college admissions test. Students should check with their counselor to make sure the college or university they plan on attending does accept this test for admissions. Students must register for this test and pay a fee. Tomball High School is a testing site but students may register to test at any site. Registration deadlines must be met and no refunds are available. Individual and campus reports are provided and national, state, and regional comparisons are available. Students’ annual performance on this test is figured in the supplemental indicator on the Academic Excellence Indicator System (AEIS) and on the School Report Card. To receive acknowledgement fifty percent of the students taking a college admissions test must score at least 24. Students’ scores on this test do not effect a campus’s rating.
Aprenda 2 Achievement Test for Spanish Speakers: This national norm referenced achievement test published by Harcourt Brace for Spanish speakers is used for Gifted and Talented, Bilingual and ESL screening and evaluation decisions.
Bilingual Verbal Ability Test (BVAT): This test is designed to help in developing entry and exit criteria in bilingual education, to facilitate appropriate program placement and to assess a bilingual student's academic readiness.
Brigance Inventory: The Brigance System addresses early development, academics, life skills, and employability skills. It is a consistent assessment system used from birth through secondary level. Brigance Assessments identify performance levels, set instructional goals, report progress, and maintain a systematic, easily interpretable history of student assessments.
Credit by Examination (CBE): Students enrolled in grades K – 12 with previous instruction in the course requested are eligible to gain credit by such examination if they received a grade of at least 60 in the course failed and score at least 70% on the exam. Written parent/guardian approval and school district representative recommendation are also required. On approval of the Attendance Review Committee (ARC), a student who has excessive absences may be permitted to earn or regain course credit lost due to absenteeism. Credit by Examination shall not be used to gain eligibility for participation in extracurricular activities but the grade does figure into grade point average (GPA). Exams are ordered through Texas Tech University. Further information is available through campus counselors.
District Writing Benchmarks I, II, and III: These tests are given three times a year (beginning, middle, and end) to students in grades 1st – 10th. The STAAR writing given at grades 4th, 7th, English I and English II is also used as the benchmark. The purpose is to benchmark students' writing ability.
The decision to complete a Dyslexia Screening is made by the 504 committee and Dyslexia Specialist when a student’s reading progress is not responding to Tier I and Tier II intervention. The screening includes the following:
- Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing (CTOPP)
- Test of Written Spelling (TWS)
- Woodcock Reading Mastery Test-Revised
- Gray Oral Reading Test (GORT)
After the screening is complete, the 504 committee will meet to determine the student’s placement.
Examination for Acceleration: Districts are required by State law to provide this testing. Students enrolled in grades K-12 with no previous instruction in the courses requested are eligible. A minimum score of 90% is required for a student to accelerate to 1st grade. For a student to accelerate in grades 1-12, a minimum score of 80% is required. Additionally, written parental approval and school district recommendation is required. Costs associated with this testing are a district expense even though parents are required to make a refundable deposit prior to ordering the tests. If a student fails to show up for the testing, deposit is not refunded. Any score for which credit is awarded will be recorded on the academic achievement record but no grade points will be awarded. If student does not meet the required score, nothing is recorded on the academic achievement record. Examinations are secured through University of Texas or Texas Tech University.
Expressive Vocabulary Test (EVT): The Expressive Vocabulary Test is used to assess expressive vocabulary and word retrieval for kindergarten students. This assessment is administered as needed during the kindergarten year.
Field Testing: Texas Education Agency (TEA) student assessment division annually conducts field tests on required State assessments. Districts and classes are randomly selected and participation is mandatory. Scores for participating districts, schools, or students are not reported.
Final Exams (for high school credit courses): Final exams are required for all high school credit courses. Exams are usually developed by departments and should contain twenty-percent essay. An exam exemption policy does exist for high school students
Fitnessgram: Fitnessgram is a health-related fitness assessment tool for grades K-12. It uses criterion-referenced standards called the Healthy Fitness Zones which are based on age and gender and represent the basic levels for good health and fitness in children ages 5 - 17 years. Students are tested in grades 3-12 using the Fitnessgram.
Flynt-Cooter: This is an individualized reading inventory to be used as needed after a student reaches level 24 of the district reading benchmarks. The inventory assess the reading competencies of Spanish speaking students in third through sixth grade.
Gates-MacGinitie Reading Tests: The Gates-MacGinitie Reading Tests assess student achievement in reading. This assessment is administered twice a year to all students in grades 4-9. It measures achievement in vocabulary and comprehension.
Gifted and Talented Evaluation Scale: This instrument is a normal survey scale for Gifted/Talented student. It is sent home to be filled out by parents and is also given to teachers to complete. The scale is built around the following gifted behaviors: language arts, social studies, science, math, leadership, creativity, and fine arts. This is one criterion used in the Gifted/Talented screening process.
IDEA Proficiency Test (IPT): This diagnostic test is used for identification, placement, program design and program exit for Limited English Proficient (LEP) students. The IDEA Proficiency Tests were designed to evaluate proficency in speaking, reading and writing in English. These tests are used in determining placement in limited English proficent programs.
Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS): This assessment is a normed referenced achievement test that provides a comprehensive assessment of students progress in all basic educational skills. The primary reason for using this assessment is to gather information to help improve instruction.
Keyboarding Proficiency Test: This district developed test requires seventh grade students to key at least twenty (20) words in a three (3) minute timing with no more than five (5) errors. This standard must be met within three (3) attempts. The test is designed to be administered after seventh grade students complete the required keyboarding course. Eighth grade students may take the Keyboarding Proficiency Test again during the eighth grade required Computer Literacy Course. Students who have not mastered the Keyboarding Proficiency Test must take Keyboarding in ninth grade. The test meets the State requirement that students must demonstrate a keyboarding proficiency prior to taking high school credit computer courses.
Math and Science Placement Tests: These district developed tests are administered to determine student placement in accelerated courses in math and science in grades seven and eight.
Naglieri Nonverbal Ability Test (NNAT): This test, published by Harcourt Brace, is a group administered measure of nonverbal reasoning and problem solving that is independent of educational curricular as well as students’ cultural or language background. The test is easily administered in about thirty (30) minutes and is a reliable means of determining students’ nonverbal reasoning ability. The test is used in Gifted and Talented screening for non-English speakers and for kindergarten screening at district expense.
National Assessment of Academic Progress (NAEP): This annual test sponsored by the federal Department of Education selects schools throughout the country for selected sample testing. States first have to agree annually to participate in the NAEP testing. The results are used to measure student performance in reading, math, science, and social studies. The Department of Education annually publishes NAEP results in a report. There are no district financial costs associated with this test.
Otis Lennon School Ability Test (OLSAT): The Otis Lennon School Ability Test is a test of abstract thinking and reasoning ability of children PK-18. This test is used to determine ability levels when screening for the Gifted and Talented program.
Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT): This test is administered to all grade 11 students at Tomball High School expense. The test is developed by the College Board and is considered to be a practice test for the SAT. National merit scholars are identified using the PSAT scores. Individual student and campus reports are provided.
Qualitative Reading Inventory II (QRI-II): This assessment is an individually administered informal reading inventory (IRI) designed to provide diagnostic information about conditions under which students can identify words and comprehend. It is used with students who are reading below grade level on an as needed basis. For example, a teacher may want more information on students in her class who did not pass TAAS Reading. It can be used at any grade level.
Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT): This is one of two nationally accepted college admissions test and is published and scored by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). Students should check with their counselor to make sure the college or university they plan on attending accepts this test for admissions. Students must register for this test and pay a fee. Tomball High School is a testing site but students may register to test at any site. Registration deadlines must be met and no refunds are available. Individual and campus reports are provided and national, state, and regional comparisons are available. Students’ annual performance on this test is figured in the supplemental indicator on the Academic Excellence Indicator System (AEIS) and on the School Report Card. To receive acknowledgement fifty percent of the students taking a college admissions test must score 1110. Students’ scores on this test do not affect a campus rating.
Stanford 10 Achievement Test Form SA (Complete Battery): This is a nationally norm referenced test published by Harcourt Brace. The test is used in grades 2-12 to determine proper program placement of a Limited English Proficient (LEP) student. It is also used to exit an LEP student from the bilingual/ESL programs. This test is also used to establish achievement levels in GT screening.
State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR): In the spring of 2012, the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) replaced the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) as the state mandated assessment. The STAAR program includes annual assessments for grades 3-8 reading and mathematics, grades 4 and 7 writing, grades 5 and 8 science, and grade 8 social studies. End-of-course assessments are also included for English I, English II, Algebra I, Biology, and U.S. History.
Student Oral Language Observation Matrix: This is a California State Department of Education observation matrix used by the bilingual teachers to check student’s oral language and English development (i.e. fluency, vocabulary, pronunciation, comprehension, and grammar) through observation.
Student Portfolio: For this assessment, students collect five to ten items (products) that demonstrate their “giftedness”. The portfolio is evaluated by trained teachers, and using a rubric, rated between one and five. This is one component for the Gifted/Talented placement decision process.
Student Technology Proficiency Evaluation: This district-developed assessment is administered at every grade level and is used to measure the district’s progress toward reaching TISD Goal #4: All TISD staff and students will demonstrate proficiency in the use of technology. The annual assessment includes performance assessment measures (i.e. products produced utilizing technology).
Teacher/Administrator Technology Proficiency Survey: This district-developed assessment is administered annually and is used to measure the district’s progress toward reaching TISD Goal #4: All TISD staff and students will demonstrate proficiency in the use of technology. The assessment includes objective measures as well as performance measures (i.e. products produced utilizing technology). All teachers and administrators will be expected to demonstrate mastery. The district will provide training for employees who need it.
Tejas LEE: The Tejas LEE is an early reading instrument designed to measure students' reading and comprehension skills in Spanish. This instrument is used in bilingual classrooms K-3 and is administered 3 times per year. This assessment tool allows teachers to identify early reading difficulties at and early age.
Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System (TELPAS): This system is used for every English Language Learner (ELL student) in Texas as a method to gauge their English proficiency in listening, speaking, reading and writing.
Texas Middle School Fluency Assessment: This is an instrument designed to identify the instructional needs in reading for students in grade 6-8. The assessment monitors growth in word reading efficiency and fluency for connected text. Connected to the assessment is a progress monitoring system that measures growth in the ability to identify words and improvement in fluency that indicates overall reading proficiency.
Woodcock-Muñoz Language Survey: This assessment instrument can be administered in English and/or Spanish to students in grades kindergaten through twelve and is used to help determine language proficiency levels in English and/or Spanish of LEP students.