Many homeschool families are generally opposed to standardized testing as a definitive measure of achievement or as a goal of education. Many of these same families will, at some point, want to have their child tested for some reason. This is a quick guide to assessment sources and approaches for homeschoolers.

Types of Assessments

Many parents look to tests since their state requires an annual “assessment”. In many cases, you do not need to formally test your child. Assessments in Florida, for instance, are mandatory but several types of assessment are permitted including a portfolio review by a licensed educator. Types of assessments to be aware of:

  • Portfolio Review
  • Interview by an educator
  • Vision Tests. I mention this since many reading difficulties can be traced to vision problems. If you are seeing problems in reading, consider having your child’s reading tested.
  • Hearing tests. Again, many speech and reading problems have their root in hearing deficiencies
  • Speech Therapy
  • Occupational Therapy
  • And array of other specialized questions which help identify medical conditions (aspergers, autism, ADHD), behavioral issues (Oppositional behavior disorder), and special learning situations (dyslexia)

Standardized Tests

Today, the popularity of standardized testing in public schools is reaching an all time high as a method of assessing students, teachers, and schools. Many of these tests are available for home use. In some states, such as California, all students are expected to take these tests annually. Sources of tests for homeschoolers:

  • A great little company that focused on helping homeschoolers obtain and use standarized tests is the Family Learning Organization.
  • The California Achievement Test (CAT) can be obtained at Christian Liberty Academy. This tests levels 2nd -12th grades.
  • Homeschool Test Service, a service of Rainier Christian Schools and Rainier Christian High School, provides the Stanford Achievement Test (SAT) to homeschoolers in Washington state.

Preparation for Tests

For advice on test preparation

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