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Assessment Audits

Students should have their learning evaluated accurately and fairly—not given inequitable, excessive, or inaccurate assessments. Below is a summary of federal grant programs that can support efforts to reduce testing, ensure tests are fair, and more.
Published: May 1, 2023
Funding Source Pertinent Allowable Uses Description Examples
ESSA Title I-A Assessment audits; innovation in assessments Addresses annual statewide assessments with the goal of clarifying new flexibilities for states and districts to reduce testing; maintain effective protections to preserve students' civil rights to ensure assessments are fair; and maximize the positive impact of transparent, consistent information about student success and progress.
ESSA Title I-B Assessment audits; innovation in assessments Outlines how States can leverage the innovative assessment demonstration authority in ESSA, which enables states to re-think their testing systems and pilot new approaches.
ESSA Title II-A Assessment audits A district can use these funds, consistent with the results of its local needs assessment, to conduct assessment audits designed to imprve the quality of instruction and to help schools recruit and retain highly qualified teachers by reducing unnecessary or low-quality testing. One district has used Title II funding to make professional development opportunitites available to teachers on the meaning, use, and availability of assessment data to better understand the function of their assessments and impact on student learning.
ESSA Title III Assessment audits; innovation in assessments A State or LEA can use ESEA Title III funds in supplementary ways to provide professional development to teachers of English learners to train these teachers to examine existing assessment items, or to develop new items for formative and interim assessments that are aligned to a State’s English language proficiency standards, to provide useful information for teachers to help English learners increase both their English language proficiency and academic achievement.
ESSA Title IV-A Assessment audits A State can use State assessment funds available under section 6111 of the ESEA to conduct an assessment audit, in collaboration with educators, of its statewide assessment system or to assist its districts in conducting audits of local systems. A State could use 6111 funds to modify an existing audit tool or template so that it could be used across districts within the State to collect information about which assessments are given, for what purpose, how the results are used, and what, if any, action the State or districts should take as a result of this information (e.g., eliminating developmentally inappropriate, duplicative, or low-quality assessments or those without a clear use).

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