CAASPP fails to adequately test students

Izzy Belof, Opinions Editor

The California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP)  is an exam that is ridiculed by many.  After all, why should students waste their energy on a test that doesn’t benefit them, especially when they’re preparing for the SAT or ACT?

Students’ disregard of the CAASPP skew the results, defeating the purpose of the exam.The CAASPP is intended to assess how well individual schools teach the new Common Core Standards, which the California Department of Education implemented in 2010.

As a junior who has taken the CAASPP, I can say with certainty that it was a complete waste of time.

In fact, I may end up being one of the students who skews the results just because I can’t bring myself to care enough about this test, especially while I’m focusing on the SAT. 

“As one of my friends put it elegantly, it was a ‘relaxing morning of hitting the “tab” and “enter” keys on the keyboard for half an hour.’” student journalist Saagar Sanghavi wrote in an opinion piece for The Prospector, Cupertino High’s school newspaper.

It doesn’t help that the CAASPP had a rocky start with consistently low scores.

In 2016, 49 percent of students in grades 3-8 and 11 met or exceeded standards in English language arts and literacy, an increase of 5 percent from 2015, according to EdSource.

That same year, 37 percent of students met or exceeded standards in math, up 4 percentage points from the year before.

Evidently, the CAASPP fails to provide students with the skills required to pass the test.

Despite its “improvement” over half of students still fail to meet the requirements of the CAASPP.

This is presumably because of the combination of students’ sense of futility and indifference. 

On the contrary, Cal High’s individual results boast higher percentages of students surpassing the CAASPP requirements, although Cal’s scores are decreasing yearly.

According to EdSource, the results of the 2018 CAASPP indicate that 86 percent of Cal students met or surpassed English requirements, while 67 percent satisfied the math requirements. Cal’s English score dropped by 1.3 percent and its math score slipped by 0.71 percent since 2017. 

The amount of students who care enough to give the CAASPP their best effort is diminishing as time goes on and patience wears thin.

Bottom line: the CAASPP is a complete joke to its test takers while making a fool of state-standardized testing.