Homeschoolers, it is a good time of year to think about your student’s year-end assessment.
As of June 2012, parents are not required to share assessment results with the Participating Agency (PA), the private school or local SAU to whom notification is reported. However, it is still necessary to conduct either a standardized test or portfolio evaluation annually for each homeschooled child. This report must be kept in the student’s records and may be required for participation in school activities and classes. It may also prove useful for transcripts or course placements. Parents are required to keep a reading log and work samples for a minimum of two years.
There are various ways to satisfy the assessment requirement; this provides flexibility to chose one that best meets each student’s needs. Several tests that are commonly accepted include the California Achievement Test (CAT-6 or CAT-5), the Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS), or the Stanford Test. Others may be used if the PA agrees in advance. Please note that the overall or composite score must be at or above the 40th percentile to be acceptable. Alternatively, the student’s portfolio can be evaluated by a certified teacher or one currently teaching in a NH non-public school. Each teacher will have a different method or requirements for the assessment, so be sure to discuss any concerns with the evaluator before arrangements are finalized.
The deadline to complete the assessment is July 1st. Testing and evaluation service providers can be extremely busy as the end of the school year approaches so it is wise to make reservations well in advance. The New Hampshire Homeschooling Coalition has the most comprehensive online list for various testing and evaluation choices; check their website for further details.