Assessment provides valuable information that is used to continuously strive to improve the academic progress of our students. There are two main types of assessment: formative assessment and summative assessment. Formative assessment happens while learners are still in the process of integrating their new knowlede with what they already know. Feedback is an integral part of formative assessment, giving students immediate information on their learning. Formative assessment also allows teachers to retool their instruction in a timely manner to meet the needs of their students.
Summative assessment is the second main type of assessment. Summative assessment typically takes place at the end of a period of learning and its results are usually for the use of the teacher or the school. Feedback on summative assessment is customarily limited. Students do not generally have the opportunity to be reassessed after a summative assessment.
Beginning in grade 3, students in the state of Texas participate in a state assessment. Currently there are two assessment programs in the state of Texas, the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) and the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR).