Philosophy of Assessment
Oak Park District 97 and the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme (IB MYP) believe that assessment at the middle schools encompasses the process of collecting, analyzing, and reporting data that reflects what students know and can do. Student progress is monitored using formative tasks and assessments that demonstrate current levels of understanding and identify individualized learning needs. Formative assessment occurs when there is still time to improve while summative assessments of learning occur at the end of a predetermined learning cycle. Summative assessment measures the synthesis of student learning and contributes to reporting the level of proficiency demonstrated by the student. Assessment is managed through an active partnership among all stakeholders: students, teachers, and families.
We believe assessment is a continuous tool that provides feedback throughout the learning process, a catalyst for student-teacher conversation, and a representation of the learning that has taken place. To learn more about our Assessment Policy and Practices, please read the Oak Park District 97 Middle School Assessment Policy that is reviewed and updated annually.
We believe formative assessment is a means to monitor student progress that occurs when there is still time to improve during the learning cycle or unit. Formative assessments are checks for understanding and opportunities for students to practice skills and get feedback about their learning prior to the summative assessment. They include, but are not limited to the following: observations, discussions, entry/exit slips, peer/self-assessments, quizzes, in-class assignments, demonstrations, visual/audio representations, homework, etc. Formative assessment encourages self-reflection for students and teachers while fostering opportunities for teachers to provide feedback that supports student learning, guides instruction and allows for adjustments accordingly.
We believe the summative assessment is an assessment of student learning that occurs at the end of predetermined learning cycles. Summative assessments measure student proficiency of expected outcomes at designated checkpoints throughout and at the end of the unit. They include, but are not limited to the following: quizzes, tests, projects, presentations, demonstrations, essays, performance tasks, portfolios, research papers, etc. Summative assessments can encourage student choice and student voice, reinforce learning through creativity and problem-solving, and vary in method to account for the variability of learners. Summative assessments are a synthesis of understanding new ideas, criterion-based and common across grade-level content areas.
Assessment in the MYP
MYP assessment requires teachers to assess the prescribed subject-group objectives using the assessment criteria for each subject group in each year of the programme. Each unit of study will have a summative assessment task aligned to the Illinois State Standards, including Common Core State Standards & Next Generation Science Standards. Each end-of-unit summative assessment measures at least one of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP) Objective Criterion to evaluate student progress. The MYP requires that each objective and its strands will be evaluated in a summative assessment at least twice in a year. Teachers may use a variety of formative assessment tasks prior to the summative assessment. The summative will form the basis for measuring the students' pattern of performance. Please refer to the Oak Park District 97 Middle School Assessment Policy for additional information.