CASE Assessments’ Language Arts Benchmarks
guides from schools or districts.
Why do CASE Language Arts Benchmark Assessments not follow pacing guides?
Following a district pacing in language arts would result in a test that is repetitive and gives a very limited picture of student progress. Pacing guides prevent many objectives from being assessed resulting in an incomplete analysis of students’ skills. A variety of passages/selections have a lot to offer—using all
competencies and objectives gives more authentic and useful data. Because the language arts curriculum is unique in that it is essentially the same from year to year, the foundation of skills and concepts can be used to delve into more difficult texts and require students to answer more rigorous items.
How can teachers ensure that they have taught all that is covered by the CASE Benchmark Assessments?
CASE benchmarks focus on the foundation of language arts skills that students continually acquire as they progress through the grades. New skills from the current grade are gradually assessed on benchmarks—items that are new to the curriculum for that year will be divided and assessed as the year progresses. Teachers are not expected to have taught everything on the benchmark, but the students will have learned the majority of the skills and concepts covered on the benchmarks in prior years of language arts.
Why are CASE Language Arts Benchmark Assessments “comprehensive” rather than measuring what has been taught during a 9‐week period?
By nature, the language arts curriculum is a continual, spiraling foundation in which the skills cannot be taught in isolation. Therefore, the language arts benchmarks will focus on that foundation—using increasing text difficulty, students will draw from the skills learned in earlier grades to take each benchmark. All benchmarks will be comprehensive and align with the skills assessed on state tests. The benchmark reports will provide teachers, students, schools, and districts with accurate pictures of the students’ progress in the language arts curriculum at benchmark points during the school year.