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General Questions

Colorado Department of Education
State Office Building, Room 502
201 East Colfax Avenue
Denver, CO 80203-1799
Phone: 303-866-6929
FAX: 303-866-6680

Angela Landrum, Principal Consultant, 303-866-6931

How do districts, schools and teachers use the work of the Content Collaboratives?

Are use of these measures of student academic learning mandatory?
These instruments are for voluntary school and district use. 

What if my district wants to use its own assessments?
If a district chooses to create, augment or purchase other assessments not identified by the state, CDE encourages the district to verify that they “meet or exceed” the quality expectations set forth by the Content Collaboratives by evaluating their assessments using the Assessment Review Tool.

How do these assessments align with the state assessments?
The assessments in the CDE Resource Bank identified as Recommended or Partially Recommended are aligned in part or in whole to the Colorado Academic Standards, including content and depth of knowledge. The new state summative assessments will also be designed to align with the Colorado Academic Standards.

Will these be used for school or district accountability?
These instruments are for voluntary school and district use. 

Who is helping the Content Collaboratives?

Professional learning that is aligned to reform goals and structured around authentic work performed by educators themselves with the support of experts has the greatest potential for being implemented and refined at the classroom level, allowing successes and challenges to be captured and reported to benefit all participants. (Scott Marion, National Center for Assessment)

CDE, in partnership with the National Center for Assessment, the National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards & Student Testing,  and the Center for Educational Testing and Evaluation, facilitate and support the work and meetings of the Content Collaboratives. Nationally recognized content area researchers sought out and gathered many of the assessments that the Content Collaboratives reviewed in Phase 1, and a Technical Steering Committee made recommendations as to how these assessments could be used in an educator’s evaluation and how technical reliability could be achieved.

What are the products?

National Content Area Researchers:

    • Offer qualified assessments pooled from states, districts, countries, vendors, universities, etc. to the Content Collaboratives for consideration

Collaborative Members:

    • Using validated criteria, identify currently available assessments per content area that are fair and unbiased, aligned to CAS and could be used in evaluation of educators
    • Identify remaining gaps;
    • Using validated criteria, work to begin filling the gaps by developing performance assessments.

Technical Steering Committee:

    • Creates guiding principles and quality criteria for collaboratives to use in reviewing and creating measures;
    • Reviews recommendations of collaboratives;
    • Creates framework for vetting all assessments being considered for the resource bank (from collaboratives, schools, districts, other states, etc).

What are the long-term goals of the collaboratives?

The vision is for the Content Collaboratives to become networks for creating and disseminating innovative teaching practices. Long term goals include:

    • Increasing student achievement through improved instructional and assessment practices in every classroom;
    • Enacting Colorado’s education reform initiatives in every classroom;
    • Establishing authentic and active participation in reform initiatives by educators across Colorado;
    • Implementing more effective use of district professional development budgets and time;
    • Decreasing the need for remediation.

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Colorado Dept. of Education
201 East Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80203
Phone: 303-866-6600
Fax: 303-830-0793
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