State Assessments

  • Spring State Testing and Trimester 3 Benchmark Assessments


    In Sunnyvale School District, we had been preparing for the possibility that at the state and federal level, alternative/local measures to the traditional CAASPP/Spring State Testing would be approved. Over the April break, the state provided a “green light” to use local measures or the Smarter Balanced assessment for Spring State Testing. After examining possible assessments used across the state and also in Santa Clara County, we are moving forward with using the NWEA MAP Growth assessment in Math and Reading. This will support us in understanding what students can do, therefore building on the assets of our learners. The NWEA MAP Growth Reading assessment will also replace STAR reading in our trimester 3 benchmarks.


    NWEA MAP Growth assessments will take less time than the Smarter Balanced assessment and we will also use this for our Trimester 3 district benchmark assessment, thereby decreasing assessment time and increasing teaching and learning time in the virtual and in person classroom. For example, we will not be administering the STAR Reading assessment and will be replacing it with NWEA MAP Growth Reading. Using NWEA MAP Growth assessments in lieu of Smarter Balanced provides us an opportunity to focus on instruction, bringing students back to campus, and utilize an assessment measure that will help us identify what students can do and how we can best support them into summer and into next school year.


    MAP Growth: 2–5 / 6+ Overview

    *Provides 42–53 questions and takes approximately 60 minutes to complete

    *Provides an overall RIT score, instructional-area RIT score, and growth data


    Our 2nd-8th grade students who are attending hybrid or in person instruction will take their assessment when on campus.  Students who are attending virtual school will take their assessment with their teacher during synchronous time.  Independent study students will take the assessment with their teacher. 

    For those students who take the California Alternative Assessment (CAA), and are attending in-person instruction with familiar staff, the math and ELA portion will be administered during the instructional day. This tool must be given in person. The mathematics and ELA portions of the SANDI assessment will be the benchmark tool for all students on the alternative track. The SANDI can be administered virtually or in person. 

    The following information covers what students who are testing NWEA MAP Growth remotely will need. Students in virtual school can take the test at home. School sites may also have an in person test option for those students who are attending virtual school, your Assistant Principal will have more details.



         Chrome Books


    All devices

    • To check devices, go to:  

    • Operating system requirements: Windows (7, 8.1, or 10) – Mac (OS® X 10.12 to 10.15) – iPad 2 or higher with iOS 11 to 12 or iPadOS 13 – Chromebook

    • Browser requirements: Safari® 11 or higher – Firefox 64 or higher – Chrome 71 or higher

    District distributed

    • Students will log onto:

    • Display resolution may need to be adjusted to 1024 x 768

      • Click on the clock in the bottom right

      • Go to settings

      • Adjust the display resolution

    • Teachers may use Go Guardian to monitor students as they work

    • App is pushed to all iPads by district

    • All other apps must be closed, including Zoom

    • iPad minis not compatible

    • Students should return to the Zoom Classroom if they have any challenges.

    Personal device

    • Same as above

    • Teachers will not use Go Guardian to monitor students as they work

    • Same as above

    • Download NWEA Secure testing app from the app store


    To make sure that each student receives the most accurate score, we are providing the following guidelines for student testing: 

    • You may assist your child with setting up the technology used to enter the test session. 

    • To keep the test fair for all students, we ask that you do not talk about the questions on the test or any materials for the test with anyone before, during, or after the test. 

    • No one may record the test, or use a camera or another device to take pictures of the test questions or of your child taking the test. This helps to keep the questions confidential. 

    • We need to know the test is being completed by your child without any help.  This helps us know what your child can do independently and plan instruction appropriately.

    • Please follow all instructions given by the test administrator or examiner.

    • If your child cannot use the computer’s camera, microphone, and speaker or headphone during remote testing, you may contact the site coordinator (Assistant Principal or Principal) for another way to administer the test to your child—for example, in-person test administration—when it can be done safely following state, county, and local health and safety requirements.


    We understand that families want to support their children in order to create the best testing environment at home. We ask that families check devices and download apps as soon as possible so that we can provide adequate support in a timely manner.

    If you have questions, concerns, or need support please reach out to your school test Site Coordinator for more information.


    Bishop – Rob Felicano 

    Cherry Chase – Kristin Brett 

    Cumberland – Carly Sturm 

    Ellis – Stephanie Fischer 

    Fairwood – Rachelle Romander 

    Lakewood – Brian Brown 

    San Miguel – Nicole Fiala 

    Vargas – John Austin 

    Columbia Middle School – Victoria Tarumoto

    Sunnyvale Middle School – Stephanie Malcolm


    Families will receive a student score report following the NWEA MAP Growth assessment. Our estimated timeline for distributing reports is over summer, which is the typical timeline for receiving state score reports.

    Thank you for making sure your child is ready to test. With your help, we can ensure that your child is provided with the best opportunity to succeed and show what they know.



    California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP)

    CAASPP (California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress) is the state's standardized testing system.  The CAASPP system consists of the the following sections:

    • Smarter Balanced online assessments in Math and English Language Arts (Grades 3 to 8)
    • California Science Test (CAST)  (Grades 5 and 8 )
    • California Alternate Assessment (CAA) (for some Special Education students grades 3 to 8)
    • CAA Science (for some special education students)

    Smarter Balanced Assessments

    The Smarter Balanced assessments are computer-based tests that measure student knowledge of the Common Core State Standards in English language arts and mathematics. 

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