Assessment Principles Completed

K-12 Testing

Principles and Indicators for Student Assessment Systems, the National Forum on Assessment's new guidelines for developing and evaluating assessment systems, will be released this fall. The Forum, a coalition of many of the nation's leading education and civil rights organizations, is currently gathering signatures of individuals and organizations who will recommend that the Principles be seriously considered for use in evaluating, revising and developing assessment systems.


The Principles and Indicators focus on developing assessment systems that help improve student learning. Thus, they call for building assessment systems up from high-quality classroom practice. Uses for assessment such as accountability and certification, they caution, must support and not undermine student learning.


The Principles call for equity, professional development for educators, community participation in assessment, clear communication about assessment, and regular review and improvement of assessment systems. Taken as a whole, the Principles provide a vision of how to transform assessment systems and practices as part of wider school reform.


The Principles and Indicators have been developed over the past two years with support from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Joyce Foundation. FairTest provided staffing for the Forum project. To obtain a copy for review and sign-on, contact the Forum c/o FairTest.