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Student Assessment

Understanding Student Assessment in ACS

Student Assessment

Past Assessment Measures:  ACT Aspire

From 2014-2017, Athens City Schools, under the direction of the Alabama State Department of Education, measured student proficiency using a test called the ACT Aspire. In June 2017, the Alabama State Board of Education voted to end the use of the ACT Aspire as Alabama's annual standardized test for math and English language arts. The district and school report cards released in February 2018 reflect the scores and growth of our schools and district as determined by these former measurement methods. To learn more about the ACT Aspire, please use the navigation to the left to explore the particulars of this measurement tool.

Current Assesment Measures:  Performance Series®, ACT & ACT WorkKeys

Beginning in the 2017-2018 school year, Athens City School adopted the Scantron Performance Series® assessment for students in grades 3-8. Performance Series® is a computer-adaptive diagnostic testing solution that provides educators with instant test results, personalized to each student, to ensure correct overall student placement. Administered over time, these tests provide a longitudinal view of student growth in core curriculum areas. ACS students in grades 3-8 took the Performance Series® assessment in the fall of 2017. They will test again in the spring of 2018. The spring results will be used to measure proficiency and growth from fall 2017 to spring 2018. 

The performance of 11th grade students is measured with the ACT. The ACT is the capstone of ACT College and Career Readiness Solutions, and it is aligned to Alabama's College and Career Readiness Standards. The ACT with Writing is administered to all Grade 11 students enrolled in Alabama public high schools. 

Senior performance and proficiency is determined using the ACT WorkKeys assessment. All Grade 12 students in Alabama public schools were assessed with ACT WorkKeys for the first time in Spring 2015.  ACT WorkKeys assessments are research-based measures of foundational work skills required for success across industries and occupations.  They have been used for more than two decades by job seekers, employees, employers, students, educators, administrators, and workforce and economic developers.

ACT WorkKeys assessments measure the cognitive and non-cognitive skills needed for success in the workforce. Students take the Applied Mathematics, Reading for Information, and Locating Information tests.  Based on the scores attained on the three assessments, students may be eligible to earn a Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum Certificate. 

Helpful Resources

ACAP Summative

The ACAP Summative is a standards-based, criterion-referenced assessment designed to measure student progress on the Alabama Courses of Study Standards. The Alabama Course of Study Standards delineate the knowledge and skills the general population of students are expected to know and be able to do at the given grade within an academic content area (i.e., English Language Arts, Math, and Science). The ACAP Summative is administered statewide once a year in the spring. The content areas to be assessed are English Language Arts and Math in grades 2 through 8 and Science in grades 4, 6, and 8. 

ACAP Summative Parent Guide - English

ACAP Summative Parent Guide - Spanish

ACAP Alternate

The ACAP Alternate is a standards-based assessment designed specifically to ensure that students with the most significant cognitive disabilities are provided access to the state academic content standards and given the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge, concepts, and skills as set forth in the Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards. The primary purpose of the ACAP Alternate is to determine the level at which Alabama students are meeting the standards. The ACAP Alternate will be administered once a year in the spring.  The content areas to be assessed are English Language Arts (ELA) and math in grades 2 through 8, 10, and 11; and science in grades 4, 6, 8, 10, and 11. 

ACAP Alternate Parent Guide - English

ACAP Alternate Parent Guide - Spanish

PreACT Secure

PreACT Secure is an online summative assessment given to 10th grade students that is aligned to the ACT and the ACT College and Career Readiness Standards. PreACT Secure measures what students have learned in the areas of English, Reading, Mathematics, and Science. PreACT Secure scores predict how students will perform on the ACT when they reach 11th grade and their readiness for college-level coursework.

PreACT Secure Parent/Guardian Information

PreACT Secure Parent/Guardian Information

ACT with Writing

The ACT is the capstone of ACT College and Career Readiness Solutions. The ACT is administered to 11th grade students and contains four multiple-choice tests—English, mathematics, reading, and science—and a writing test. These tests are designed to measure skills that are most important for success in postsecondary education and that are acquired in secondary education.

ACT With Writing Parent/Guardian Information

ACT With Writing Parent/Guardian Information (Spanish)

ACT Workeys

The ACT WorkKeys Assessments are administered to 12th grade students. The assessments measure and certify the essential work skills needed for success in jobs across industries and occupations.  Students who take these assessments—Applied Math, Graphic Literacy and Workplace Documents—are eligible to earn an ACT® National Career Readiness Certificate® (NCRC®). 


ACS WorkKeys Information for Parents/Guardians

ACS WorkKeys Information for Parents/Guardians (Spanish)


ACCESS for ELLs is a suite of secure, large-scale English language proficiency assessments for students in kindergarten through Grade 12 who have been identified as English Language Learners (ELLs). This suite of assessments includes Kindergarten ACCESS for ELLs, ACCESS for ELLs Online, and WIDA Alternate ACCESS. Each test, across all grade levels, assesses the four language domains of Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking.

Kindergarten ACCESS for ELLs

Kindergarten ACCESS is a paper-based test individually administered to kindergarten students in a game-like, interactive format. This assessment is given annually.

ACCESS for ELLs Online

ACCESS Online is a computer-based, adaptive test that responds to student performance and may be administered in group or individual settings. This assessment is given annually to students in grades 1-12.


Alternate ACCESS is a large-print, paper-based test individually administered to students in grades 1-12 who are identified as English learners (ELs) with the most significant cognitive disabilities.


National Assessment on Educational Progress (NAEP)

NAEP is the largest continuing and nationally representative assessment of what our nation’s students know and can do in various subjects. NAEP is congressionally mandated, and was first administered in 1969 to measure student achievement nationally. NAEP is referred to as the Nation’s Report Card because it tells us how students across the country, not just in one particular school or state, are performing. ‚Äč NAEP is administered in Alabama in selected schools to students in grades 4 and 8.