The purpose of assessing student progress at Horizons is to measure growth toward and beyond BVSD and state academic standards as well as individual goals. Horizons students set and evaluate their own goals, in cooperation with their parents, as facilitated by their homeroom teachers. Students do not receive grades. Assessment measures used at Horizons include:
A portfolio is a collection of student work, which provides evidence of progress. Individual student portfolios include personal goals, self evaluations, assessments, and work samples in all content areas. Seventh and eighth grader maintain an “e-portfolio” or electronic portfolio.
Regular digital recordings may occur as we assess presentation skills. These provide a visual record of a student’s progress. If available, when a student graduates, these are offered to parents with their child’s academic portfolio.
Colorado State Assessments
Yearly assessment is required in grades 3-8 by the Colorado Department of Education to determine both proficiency and growth levels on these measures. In 2015-16, the Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS) and The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) will make up the state’s common assessments.
Who is required to participate in CMAS & PARCC:
- English Language Arts – Grades 3-8
- Math – Grades 3-8
- Social Studies – Grades 4 and 7 (to be administered on a sampling basis with schools participating once every three years, some BVSD schools will be selected in any given year)
- Science – Grades 5 and 8
There are two, one hour long student-led family conferences held each year for the purpose of presenting student work samples, goal-setting and evaluating progress. Student-led conferences are a significant part of a student’s experience here at Horizons as they give each student a chance to begin to integrated what they are learning and to take ownership of their learning. In conference, students have the opportunity to share with others what they value, what they are learning about and an increasing level of self awareness about who they are and how they will be of service in the world.
Literacy and Math Assessments
Teachers of grades K-5 administer BVSD literacy and math, and other assessments at regular intervals throughout the year. These interim measurements allow for teachers to gather and track data as to student progress in these critical areas.