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Testing

CTU members in CPS district-run schools have the opportunity to recover instructional time by eliminating excessive tests at their school.

CTU members now have an established procedure to implement our contract Article 44-32, which limits excessive standardized testing in our schools. At every school, our members can vote on their school’s assessment plan for 2018-2019 school year.

What tests do I have to give?

Under contract article 44-32, CPS can only require tests that are mandated by state or federal law, REACH tests, and tests required for particular programs (e.g., IB). Mandated tests include PARCC, NWEA Spring, REACH Performance Tasks, KIDS, SAT (grade 11), NAEP, Illinois Science Assessment, ACCESS for English Language Learners, Dynamic Learning Maps Alternative Assessment, and IB Assessments.

Which tests are NOT required?

TRC/DIBELS, mCLASS Math, NWEA MAP for Primary Grades (MPG), Progress Monitoring, 5-week assessments, Measuring Up Live, Fountas & Pinnell, Compass, ANet, Fall & Winter NWEA, PSAT 8/9 and PSAT 10 do not fit into any of those mandated categories.

PPC and Principal Must Consult

This spring, the principal must consult with the PPC and faculty to prepare an assessment plan for next school year. The Delegate and PPC should make sure that the plan is discussed by the faculty, including in grade levels/bands, subject areas, and special education. The principal must provide an assessment plan to teaching staff on or before June 5, 2018.

We highly recommend you convene a union meeting immediately to discuss, as a staff, your preferences, to maximize unity and influence over the school assessment plan and vote.

Adoption of the plan shall be by majority vote.

Teachers and the principal vote, using fair voting procedures, which are agreed upon by the PPC and the principal.

If the PPC is unanimous, they can authorize a particular grade/subject area or sub-group to conduct a simultaneous supplemental vote on assessments applicable only to that group.

If the recommended plan fails to win a majority, the principal and network may offer an alternative assessment plan. We strongly recommend that your PPC and faculty firmly represent the staff’s preference at this stage.

If no plan is approved, the plan can be submitted to strategic bargaining, the monthly meetings held between CTU and the CPS Labor Relations Department.

A Victory Against Over-testing

We view the new procedure and CPS draft assessment calendar as a victory, in that the vast majority of tests that educators have been forced to administer are not mandatory, and we have the right to vote them down, if we deem it educationally appropriate.

Key Resources

Guide To Implementing Testing Contract Language

In our 2015 contract, we won strong language to limit over-testing. This PowerPoint presentation “Testing in CPS” is an overview of the types of tests that exist in CPS, which can be mandated, cost and ramifications. It was created in the fall of 2017 when schools first voted on assessment.

Download the “Testing in CPS” PowerPoint.

The following FAQ is intended to help clarify the language.

Download a PDF version to print and distribute.

Find Your Field Representative

Just as knowledge must be shared, your voice must be shared. Take action. Join a committee, represent your school community.

Current Contract

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