Johnson Parents and/or Guardians,

As the snow begins to melt away, trees begin to bud, and the sounds of birds chirping take the place of the crackling branches of frozen twigs and whistling wind of winter, we are reminded that spring is just around the corner. At the same time, districts across the state begin to ready themselves for spring assessments. Here at Johnson, that process is already underway. The two major assessments that we would like your help in preparing our Jaguars for are the NWEA/ MAP test and the state assessment, MSTEP. To help you better understand and differentiate between the two, I’d like to provide for you important information about each assessment.

NWEA/MAP Assessment

This is a computer adaptive test that all students K-5 take at least twice per year. It is an assessment that the district has chosen as a means to gauge student growth as well as provide data for targeted interventions for all of our students. The testing window for MAP begins in March and ends in May. As a computer adaptive test, the students in grades K-5 take the assessment online. Questions “adapt” to the student’s response – either increasing or decreasing in difficulty - based on the student’s answers. This is a norm referenced test where students are compared to millions of other students in their grade level across the nation. A RIT score is given along with a percentile for each child. The average range is between 40th and 60th percentile. A percentile of 90 percent would mean that your child performed better than 90 percent of the children in his or her grade level nationwide. If you have any questions regarding specific testing dates for your child, please contact their teacher.

M-STEP

The M-STEP is the state assessment that, in 2014-2015, replaced the MEAP test. This too is taken on a computer. At Johnson, students in grades 3-5 will take the assessment. Grades 3 and 4 will take ELA and Math only. Grade 5 will take Social Studies and Science, as well as ELA and Math. This test is proficiency based meaning the state sets “cut scores” and determines proficiency based on these scores. The state of Michigan controls the timeline for disseminating test results, therefore, when we as a school and district receive these results is at the mercy of the state. Across the district, we will be testing during the months of April and May. Specific dates will be communicated in the coming weeks. Lastly, as the MSTEP tests nears, we will communicate suggestions regarding what you can do at home to help set your child up for success on testing days. For more information regarding M-STEP, please visit https://www.michigan.gov/mde/. As always, thank you for all you do for our Johnson Jags!

Sincerely,

Mr. Gignac

Principal Johnson Elementary