The New York City Department of Education
Dominick A. D’Angelo, Principal
DAVID A. BOODY
INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL 228 FOR MAGNET STUDIE
“EYES ON EXCELLENCE”
718-375-7635 Fax 718-376-1209
May 15, 2020
To the Parents/Guardians,
We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health. As we close out the school year, new challenges continue to present themselves during the pandemic. School diagnostic tests and state exams are our latest challenge.
Traditionally, schools administer start of the year diagnostic assessments and end of the year tests for comparative purposes. In light of our stressful times you may wonder why we just don’t cancel them. State exams are already cancelled leaving teachers and administrators with less data to make important decisions with. For example, test data is one of several promotional criteria. Informed decisions regarding curriculum, placement, summer school, teaching methodology, curriculum and state Comprehensive Education Plan goals are all made with student data from testing.
With the start of virtual learning we doubled our efforts to keep in communication with families. We appreciate your assistance, and we are asking your help once more. Your child will soon be asked to complete the I-Ready Diagnostics for math and ELA at home. This is a different type of assessment. It is important that you do not help your child with answering questions but your child will benefit from your support and encouragement. Please try to set up a work area that is calm and uninterrupted, below is a checklist that can help and the testing schedule.
- What is the test like? How is this assessment different? The i-Ready Diagnostic is not like a traditional test. It starts with each student at a difficulty level based on the grade they are in. As students answer questions correctly or incorrectly, the test adjusts up or down, with questions of varying difficulty, until the assessment reaches the level of difficulty that is “just right” for each student. This means each child receives a challenging assessment, which may get frustrating for the child. The Diagnostic is designed for students to get about 50 percent of the questions correct and 50 percent incorrect to help identify their precise achievement level on a range of skills. Why is my student being asked to take this assessment at home? The purpose of this is not to give your child a score or grade. The results of this adaptive assessment allow i-Ready to personalize your child’s online learning so the online lessons assigned to them are “just right.”
- Determine a time on the scheduled test dates to take the Diagnostic. The Diagnostic for a given subject should take about 60 minutes to complete. We suggest splitting this time up into shorter sessions of about 30 minutes for middle school students. Ensure you have correct login information from the student’s teacher. Confirm headphones and audio are working. Your child will need scratch paper to solve problems on the Diagnostic for Mathematics and may find it helpful to take notes during parts of the Diagnostic for Reading. Please try to help us motivate your child. Explain why they are taking this Diagnostic, and tell them to do their best.
- Try to monitor and encourage your child as they are completing the assessment. Remind them to work out their math questions on paper. If you notice them getting tired or speeding through the questions, offer encouragement and suggest they take a short break. Do not assist your child with answering assessment questions, as this may lead to the online lessons not being at the right level for your child.
- Confirm Completion to ensure your child has fully completed the assessment. Your child will receive a congratulatory message and see lessons appear on their screen.
If there are any questions, please email your child’s teacher or paraprofessional if you need assistance. Once again, we thank you for you all your help with this matter.