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Testing Period Self-Assessment – Leadership Readiness

A turnaround school principal asked her Ed Directions’ coach how important the Testing Period was in the overall scope of things. The coach answered that while the school focus should be on the EOY transition and on the competencies described in the standards, schools are held accountable for test scores and state labels. As educators, we are expected to build competent learners and performers and to prepare those students to make successful transitions to the next stage of their education or their lives. At the same time, we are expected to increase student performance on a paper and pencil test, and our status with the state’s Department of Education will be defined (in part or in whole) by that test performance. Underperformance on the state assessment can have serious negative consequences for schools and for those staffs, and for this reason, we must take the test preparation part of our job seriously.

In many schools, the focus for planning the test is only on the administration. There are rules and regulations, ethical concerns, materials acquisition and distribution concerns, test coverage concerns, and behavior management concerns. These are all legitimate concerns. If we ignore any of them, we can cause many students to score below their potential. It is also possible, however, that we can do all of these things well and still allow students to underperform.

– excerpt from Turning Around Turnaround Schools, Volume 2 – Embracing the Rhythm of the Learner Year

The free tools provided on this site are pulled, in part, from our recent book Turning Around Turnaround Schools, Volume 2 – Embracing the Rhythm of the Learner Year. If you have questions about how to use any of these tools, please feel free to contact us, or check out the book, available on

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