California Department of Education Releases CAASPP Data

by California State PTA Education Commission

Earlier this week, the California Department of Education (CDE) released the results of the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) tests administered during the 2021-22 school year.

Smarter Balanced assessments are administered in grades 3-8 and 11, with tests for English language arts/literacy (ELA) and mathematics. In addition, the California Science Test (CAST) assesses students on their mastery of the Next Generation Science Standards in grades five and eight, and once again in high school.

2021-22 School Year Results

This is the first year of CAASPP testing results since 2019, as the State Board of Education suspended mandatory testing during the COVID-19 pandemic. In this data release, student results are reported in four tiers related to mastery of ELA, Math, and Science standards: not met, nearly met, met, or exceeded.

As expected, assessment results revealed the academic impacts of pandemic-era disruptions, underscoring the need for ongoing accelerated learning and support.

Statewide, the percentage of students meeting or exceeding standards on the 2022 Smarter Balanced summative assessments declined by 4 percentage points (from 51 percent to 47 percent) for English language arts (ELA) and 7 percentage points (from 40 percent to 33 percent) for mathematics when compared to students who took the tests in 2018–19—before the pandemic.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond shared in the press release, “these baseline data underscore what many of us know: that the road to recovery is long and our students will need sustained support over many years.”

How to Get Engaged

State tests are an objective way of showing how well students met the expectations of their grade level. But, they are only one of many measures and aren’t meant to tell the whole story of a student’s performance. 

Here are a few ways you can learn more about the CAASPP results in your area and what they mean for your local schools.

  • Look up the results from your child’s school, district and county at the California Department of Education CAASPP webpage.
  • Talk with your child’s teacher and ask questions such as: 
    • “Where does my child need more support or improvement?” 
    • “What short-term goals should my child meet to show progress?”
    • “How can I support learning at home?”
  • Talk with district educational leaders and ask questions such as:
    • “What strategies does the district have in place to address accelerated learning?”
    • “What is the plan for expanded learning funds from the state budget?”
    • “How can our district better support strategies to address academic, behavioral and social-emotional needs for all students?”

Download the Family Guide to Annual State Tests in California from National PTA.

Test Scores Can Help Jump Start the Learning Process

Register Now!

California State PTA Presents:
A Zoom presentation by Educational Testing Service and Metametrics
September 2, 2021 – 4-5pm


We often think of test scores as the ending point of a student’s learning, a “final score.” But test results can actually be the start of learning. In this presentation you’ll learn how to use the results of state testing to find just the right tools for continuing your child’s progress in reading and math. 

Register here and attend on September 2 from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m.

During the presentation, which will be facilitated by California State PTA President Carol Green, experts from ETS and Metametrics will explain the Lexile and Quantile Framework. If you look at the 2021 Student Score Report, based on tests most students took at the end of last school year, you’ll see Lexile and Quantile measures. (You’ll find them on page 5 of this sample Student Score Report.)

You can use your child’s Lexile and Quantile measures to find their reading and math levels. The California Department of Education has arranged for all parents to have access to a set of free family-friendly tools, including Find-A-Book and Math@Home, that enable you to match learning resources and activities to your child’s learning levels in both reading and math. 

These two parent guides will give you the basics.




But even better, register for and attend our September 2 presentation.