An Investigation of Charter Schools' School Leader and Teacher Level of Assessment Literacy

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Pfeiffer-Hoens, Mareen
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Middle Tennessee State University
Assessment of student performance is one of the most critical responsibilities of school leaders and teachers. Teachers and school leaders must acquire an understanding of assessment literacy for utilizing data to make sound data-driven decisions. The purpose of this descriptive study was to investigate the levels of assessment literacy among elementary teachers and school leaders in charter schools. The target population was approximately 200 educators from one elementary charter school network with schools primarily in an urban district in Tennessee and in an urban district in California. The instrument used for this research study was the Classroom Assessment Literacy Inventory (CALI) (Mertler, 2003). The inventory consists of two sections. The first section of the survey consists of demographic questions regarding years of experience, level of education, intensity of assessment training, and type of teacher education program. The second section uses the CALI to measure the level of assessment literacy of teachers and school leaders. A total of five school leaders and 58 teachers completed the survey. The data from the survey showed that teachers and school leaders averaged 20.23 out of 35 questions correct (57.8%). The average is slightly lower than the average obtained in the study of in-service teachers by Plake et al. (1993) and in the study of in-service teachers by Mertler (2003). Findings indicated that the level of assessment literacy has not changed significantly in over twenty years. The results are discussed in terms of use to establish a baseline that can be used in further study of assessment literacy of both classroom teachers and school leaders, especially through professional development.
Assessment Literacy, Charter School, Classroom Assessment Literacy, Teacher Education Programs