Skip to main content
California Department of Education Logo

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System

California's statewide student assessment system.

On January 1, 2014, California Education Code Section 60640 established the CAASPP System of assessments. The CAASPP - CalEdFacts Web page provides a more detailed overview of the system. The CAASPP System (PDF) includes the following required assessments and additional resources:

  • Smarter Balanced Assessments – The Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments, Interim Assessments, and Digital Library are all part of the CAASPP System.

  • The California Alternate Assessments (CAAs) for English Language Arts (ELA) and mathematics are given in grades three through eight and grade eleven. The CAA for science is given in grades five and eight and one time in high school. For the pilot test, all eligible grade twelve students will take the CAA for science, and LEAs have the option to test any grade ten or eleven student who has finished their last year of science instruction. Only eligible students may participate in the administration of the CAAs.

  • California Science Tests (CAST) will be field-tested in spring 2018. Students will be administered the CAST field test in grades five and eight and once in high school. All grade twelve students will be administered the field test, and local educational agencies (LEAs) can elect to administer the field test to any students in grade ten or eleven who have completed their science coursework. The CAST is aligned with the California Next Generation Science Standards.

2017–18 CAASPP Back-to-School Toolkit

The CAASPP Back-to-School Toolkit provides links to resources, including communications and key informational documents, that schools and districts can use during back-to-school activities.

CAASPP Results

Student Accessibility Resources

The CAASPP System provides accessibility resources for all students, including those who are English learners and students with disabilities. Teachers are encouraged to review these resources early in the school year and provide opportunities for students to experience these resources throughout their classroom instructional and assessment experiences.

CAASPP Institute Training Materials

The CAASPP Institute was a professional development training opportunity that the CDE offered to local educational agency (LEA) teams throughout California during the 2015–16 and 2016–17 school years. The Institute training focused on utilizing all components of the CAASPP system of assessments and provided dedicated time for LEA teams to strategize ways to implement these components to improve teaching and learning. The 2015–16 CAASPP Institute training materials consist of 31 short video modules, organized into six sections, and include ancillary materials. The 2016–17 CAASPP Institute training materials consist of seven session presentations, including speaker notes, activities, and ancillary materials.

“CAASPP in Action” Report Series

The CAASPP in Action series features LEAs sharing their successes, challenges, and lessons learned while implementing the CAASPP System. The series includes LEAs documenting the strategic implementation of one or more components of the CAASPP System. Each report includes a district profile, implementation goals, lessons learned, and next steps in an effort to continuously improve teaching and learning.

CAASPP Communications Toolkit

The CAASPP Communications Toolkit is a link to Smarter Balanced Summative Assessment resources, including communications and key informational documents to inform schools, families, and community representatives about online summative testing.

CAASPP Weekly Updates

To receive regular updates on the latest information about the CAASPP System, including the Smarter Balanced assessments, join the California Department of Education’s (CDE’s) CAASPP e-mail list by sending a blank e-mail to: subscribe-caaspp@mlist.cde.ca.gov. Go the CAASPP Update Archive's Web page for past updates.

Technology Resources

A variety of resources are available from the California Department of Education (CDE) Technology Readiness Resources Web page, including information on minimum technology requirements for online testing, link to a network bandwidth checker, and the latest Information Technology Coordinator Update.

CAASPP Info

Quick Reference Guides – Step-by-step instructions for how to accomplish a task or activity within California’s assessment programs.

CAASPP Student Score Reports Information – Samples of 2016–17 CAASPP student score reports.

Implementation of CAASPP – Reports to the legislature required by California Education Code pertaining to the CAASPP System implementation.

Federal Listening/Speaking Waiver (PDF) – On August 9, 2016, the United States Department of Education granted a limited waiver (under Title I, Part A, Section 8401[b]) to waive assessing certain reading/language arts content standards that include speaking and listening standards.

CAASPP Regulations

Related Resources

Coordinators & Admins

Communications for Local Educational Agencies

Template Letters for Parents and Guardians
  • Parent and guardian score report letter template
    The score report letters address student results on the CAASPP Summative Assessments and direct parents to resources that will help them understand their child’s test scores. Local educational agencies (LEAs) can adapt the templates by adding the LEA letterhead and inserting needed information. The letters can be included with the Student Score Reports that must be distributed to parents.

  • 2016–17 Notice of CAASPP Administration letter
    The letter serves as notice to parents of the year’s statewide assessments. LEAs can adapt the templates by adding the LEA letterhead and inserting necessary local information. This letter has been translated into the following languages: Spanish, Eastern Armenian, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Tagalog, and Hmong.

    Note: The sample letter does not satisfy a district's obligation to notify parents of their right to exempt their child from statewide assessments pursuant to California Education Code Section 60615.

  • Informational letter to parents and guardians on the California Science Test (CAST) Pilot Test (DOC)
    The letter provides information to parents about the 2016–17 pilot test of the new statewide CAST. LEAs can adapt the template by adding the LEA letterhead and inserting necessary local information. The letter provides links to the Practice and Training Test Web page External link opens in new window or tab. and the Quick Reference Guide How To: Start a Training Test for Science (PDF).

Test Administration Resources

  • CAASPP Coordinator Checklist
    The checklist is designed to assist district CAASPP coordinators in understanding the tasks/activities necessary to ensure successful administration of the CAASPP summative assessments.

Related Resources

Teachers

Smarter Balanced Resources for Teachers

CAASPP Teacher Guides: Smarter Balanced Assessments

These teacher guides deepen teachers’ understanding of the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments, their alignment with the California Common Core State Standards (CA CCSS), and their intended connection to classroom learning.

Assistance for Teachers

New Resources for Science: these two one-page flyers provide links to several science resources, including an assessment fact sheet, a Quick Reference Guide for How to Start a Testing Session, and an informational video.

Summative Quick Reference Guide (PDF) – This document is a one page resource that describes the basic steps in starting a summative test session.

Practice and Training Tests External link opens in new window or tab.
This link accesses both the Practice and Training Tests portal. The Practice Tests provide students with grade-specific testing experiences that are similar in structure and format to the Summative Assessments. The Training Tests provide students with the opportunity to quickly become familiar with the software and interface features. The Training Tests are organized by grade-bands (e.g., 3–5).

Resources Search
A searchable site that houses a collection of resources to support implementation of the Common Core State Standards.

Keyboard Commands for Students External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)
Provides keyboard commands students and teachers can use to navigate between test elements, features, and tools.

Smarter Balanced Resources
Test blueprints, initial achievement level descriptors and college content readiness policy, accessibility and accommodation information, Common Core State Standards, presentations, frequently asked questions, and fact sheets.

Communications for Teachers

Students & Parents

The CAASPP System is intended to provide parents and students more accurate and actionable information about what students are learning. Because the Smarter Balanced Assessments, which are administered as part of the CAASPP System, are computer adaptive, these Assessments will also provide better information about the needs and successes of individual students.

Parent Resources

  • Parent Guides to the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments
    These revised parent guides provide information about the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments and will help parents better understand their children’s test results.
  • CAASPP Student Score Report Information
    This page provides information for parents or guardians to help interpret the CAASPP student score report.
  • California PTA External link opens in new window or tab. – This Web site provides resources and information about the new Smarter Balanced assessments built to help students, parents, teachers, and school leaders know where students are on the path to success. Included on this Web site are updated resources to help understand your child's CAASPP scores.

Practice and Training Tests External link opens in new window or tab.
This link accesses both the Practice and Training Tests portal. The Practice Tests provide students with grade-specific testing experiences that are similar in structure and format to the Summative Assessments. The Training Tests provide students with the opportunity to quickly become familiar with the software and interface features. The Training Tests are organized by grade-bands (e.g., 3–5).

Student Resources

Multiplication Table (1–9)
This resource is a single digit (1–9) multiplication table that is a non-embedded accommodation for grade 4 mathematics items and above. This is to be used only for students with a documented and persistent calculation disability (i.e., dyscalculia). It can be printed for students requiring this accommodation.

Keyboard Commands for Students External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)
Provides keyboard commands students can use to navigate between test elements, features, and tools.

Other Resources

Smarter Balanced Parents and Student Page External link opens in new window or tab.
Provides access to fact sheets, questions and answers, and resources in English and Spanish.

Questions:   California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress | caaspp@cde.ca.gov | 916-445-8765
Last Reviewed: Monday, October 16, 2017
Recently Posted in Testing
  • CAASPP Update, Issue 233 (added 07-Dec-2017)
    California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update, November 29, 2017.
  • CAASPP Update, Issue 232 (added 16-Nov-2017)
    California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update, November 15, 2017.
  • CAASPP Update, Issue 231 (added 09-Nov-2017)
    California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update, November 8, 2017.
  • CAASPP Update, Issue 229 (added 26-Oct-2017)
    California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update, October 25, 2017.
  • CAASPP Update, Issue 228 (added 19-Oct-2017)
    California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) e-mail update, October 18, 2017.