BILL NUMBER: AB 476	AMENDED
	BILL TEXT

	AMENDED IN SENATE  AUGUST 19, 2009
	AMENDED IN SENATE  JUNE 30, 2009
	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  JUNE 1, 2009
	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  APRIL 14, 2009

INTRODUCED BY   Assembly Member Torlakson

                        FEBRUARY 24, 2009

   An act to add Section 60649.1 to the Education Code, relating to
the Standardized Testing and Reporting Program.


	LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


   AB 476, as amended, Torlakson.  The  Standardized
Testing and Reporting Program.
   Existing law establishes the Standardized Testing and Reporting
Program (the STAR Program) pursuant to which school districts,
charter schools, and county offices of education are required to
administer achievement tests to each of their pupils in grades 2 to
11, inclusive.
   This bill would require the Superintendent of Public Instruction,
on or before April 1, 2010, to contract with an independent evaluator
for evaluation of the STAR Program, as specified. The bill would
require the independent evaluator to complete a report containing the
findings of his or her evaluation. The Superintendent would be
required to provide this evaluation to the Legislature, the Governor,
and the  state board   State Board of Education
 on or before November 1, 2010. The bill would require an
existing advisory committee to advise the Superintendent on the
independent evaluation of the STAR Program, including making
recommendations regarding the selection of the independent evaluator
and the evaluation parameters. The bill would require the
Superintendent to appoint 4 additional members to the advisory
committee for these purposes. The bill would require the State
Department of Education to use specified federal funds, not exceeding
the amount of $150,000, for the purpose of contracting for this
evaluation.
   Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes.
State-mandated local program: no.


THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  SECTION 1.  Section 60649.1 is added to the Education Code, to
read:
   60649.1.  (a) On or before April 1, 2010, the Superintendent shall
contract with an independent evaluator, who shall report to him or
her, for evaluation of the STAR Program. The evaluation shall be 
a meta-analysis of existing information and data from the STAR
Program  based upon the following:
   (1) Information gathered in field testing and annual
administrations of the STAR assessments.
   (2) Existing technical reports, peer reviews, and other studies,
reports, and evaluations of the STAR  program  
Program  conducted by or at the request of the department, the
Legislature, or the state board.
   (3) State and federal requirements.
   (4) A review of research-based alternative assessment models. 

   (5) A review of existing and emerging practices in large-scale
assessment from across the nation. 
   (b) The evaluation shall include, but shall not necessarily be
limited to, all of the following: 
   (1) An independent evaluation of alignment between the assessment
used to calculate adequate yearly progress (AYP) or academic
performance index (API) and the content standards on which the
assessment is based.  
   (2) An independent analysis of the alignment between the STAR
assessments and the full range of the content standards and a
determination of whether the STAR Program assesses pupil knowledge in
the same manner and at the same level of complexity as expected in
the content standards. An independent evaluation of each assessment
alignment shall be conducted at least every five years. 

   (1) A report on the results of prior analyses regarding the
alignment between the STAR assessments and the full range of the
content standards and a determination of whether the STAR Program
assesses pupil knowledge in the same manner and at the same level of
complexity as expected in the content standards.  
   (3) 
    (2)  An independent analysis of the grade level
continuity and  vertical alignment of standards-aligned test
content, and the ability of the tests to produce scores for an
individual pupil that can be validly compared from year to year.
  vertical articulation of the content standards. 

   (3) An independent analysis of the ability of the tests to produce
scores for an individual pupil that can be validly compared from
year to year. 
   (4) An independent analysis of the use of content standards in
other core curriculum areas for testing items, as applicable.
   (5)  An independent analysis of   A 
 report on the results of prior analyses regarding  pupil
performance, broken down by assessment, grade level, race or
ethnicity, and end-of-course assessments, including any trends that
become apparent over time.
   (6) An independent analysis of the degree to which the STAR
Program complies with professional testing standards and satisfies or
exceeds state and federal requirements for assessments for each
grade level.
   (7) An independent analysis of the usefulness of the STAR Program
in terms of state and local program evaluations  as well as
pupil-level information.   . 
   (8) An independent analysis of the usefulness of the STAR Program
in  providing individual results and in  terms of providing
a diagnostic assessment for classroom use.
   (9) An independent analysis of the feasibility and cost of the
development and administration of a diagnostic alternative test in
grade levels and content standard areas that are not required to have
an assessment under federal law. 
   (c) An evaluation separately shall consider test results for each
of the following pupil subgroups, provided that information
concerning individual pupils shall not be gathered or disclosed in
the process of preparing the evaluation:  
   (1) English learners and non-English learners.  
   (2) Individuals with exceptional needs and individuals without
exceptional needs.  
   (3) Pupils who qualify for free or reduced-price meals and are
enrolled in schools that qualify for assistance under Title 1 of the
federal Improving America's Schools Act of 1994 (Public Law 103-382)
and pupils who do not qualify for free or reduced-price meals and are
not enrolled in schools that qualify for assistance under Title 1 of
the federal Improving America's Schools Act of 1994 (Public Law
103-382).  
   (4) Any group of pupils that has been determined by the
independent evaluator to be differentially affected by the STAR
Program assessments established pursuant to this article. 

   (d) 
    (c)  The report by the independent evaluator containing
the findings of his or her evaluation shall include, but shall not
necessarily be limited to, all of the following:
   (1) Recommendations to improve the quality, fairness, validity,
and reliability of the examinations.
   (2) Recommendations for revisions in design, administration,
scoring, processing, or use of the examinations to ensure compliance
with state and federal requirements in an efficient manner.
   (3) Recommendations for revisions of the examinations to improve
grade level continuity and vertical alignment of standards-aligned
test content and the ability of the tests to produce scores for an
individual pupil that can be validly compared from year to year.
   (4) Recommendations for revisions of the examination to improve
integration of content standards in other core curriculum areas for
testing items, as applicable.
   (5) Recommendations to improve the usefulness of the test to the
state, local educational agencies, schools, teachers, pupils, and
parents.
   (6) Recommendations regarding revisions that would allow the STAR
Program to provide pupil-level diagnostic information and to provide
a diagnostic assessment for classroom use.
   (7) Recommendations regarding alternative diagnostic assessments
that align with state academic content standards. 
   (8) Recommendations regarding alternatives to the current testing
format to allow the greatest aggregate base for assessing
districtwide performance on content standards.  
   (e) 
    (d)  In order to provide the Legislature with adequate
information to consider reauthorization of the STAR Program, the
Superintendent shall provide the evaluation to the Legislature, the
Governor, and the state board on or before November 1, 2010. 

   (f) 
    (e)  The advisory committee established pursuant to
Section 52052.5 shall advise the Superintendent on the independent
evaluation by providing all of the following:
   (1) Recommendations regarding the parameters of the evaluation.
   (2) Recommendations regarding any request for proposals or request
for applications used to solicit contract proposals.
   (3) Recommendations regarding the selection of the contractor.
   (4) A review of any reports submitted by the independent
evaluator, including any midterm reports as well as the final
evaluation. 
   (g) 
    (f)  The Superintendent shall appoint four additional
members, who shall be educators or individuals having expertise in
large-scale assessment and who shall serve only for the purposes of
subdivision (f), to the advisory committee established pursuant to
Section 52052.5. 
   (h) The department shall use federal Flexibility and
Accountability funds pursuant to the federal No Child Left Behind Act
of 2001 (20 U.S.C. Sec. 6301), not to exceed one hundred fifty

    (g)     The department shall use federal
funds made available under Title VI (20 U.S.C. Sec. 7301 et seq.)
pursuant to the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (20 U.S.C. Sec. 6301
et seq.), not to exceed one hundred fifty  thousand dollars
($150,000), for the purpose of contracting for this evaluation.