Multiple measures of student progress are needed to know how students are doing and to target instruction to best meet their needs. Each day, our teachers use informal (sometimes called “formative”) assessments to find out where students are and to make changes in their plans and activities for the next day. We also use overall (sometimes called “summative”) assessments to measure student learning for a unit, a course, or content area. Some of these overall assessments include annual statewide tests.
In Washington State, students are regularly tested to measure their progress as they move through school. In high school, they must pass specific exit exams or state-approved alternatives to be eligible to earn a certificate of academic achievement/high school diploma.