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  For more Information:
  Health and Fitness Education
  lisa.kloke@k12.wa.us
  (360) 725-4977

  Sexuality Education / Health and Fitness

Frequently Asked Questions


What does the law state regarding health and fitness assessments at the state level?
What are OSPI-Developed Assessments?
Why are assessments being used?
When should assessments be used? At what grade level?
Should every teacher within a district do the same assessment if they teach the same course or at the same grade level?
Who is responsible for the copying costs of the assessments?
Who is responsible for scoring the assessments?
What is considered a “passing” score?
What happens if a student fails an assessment?
Who is accountable for reporting results and what is the manner of reporting?
Since some assessments are classroom projects, can the students work in groups?
How much teacher/coaching feedback is allowed as students are completing assessment responses?
How can the teacher accommodate the assessment for all students?
If a student is allowed to waive physical education, is she/he expected to participate in the assessment?
What should a district do if students are enrolled in courses through Running Start or online health or fitness education courses?
How can the results of the assessments be used to help improve teaching and learning?
Can I use a Fitness Performance Assessment (mile, push-up, sit-up, etc.) in place of an OSPI-Developed Fitness Assessment?
Where can teachers find opportunities for training on scoring the assessments?


What does the law state regarding health and fitness assessments at the state level?
RCW 28A.230.095 includes two provisions. The first addresses all three subject areas: Social studies, the arts, and health and fitness. The second makes special reference to civics. (Please note the underlined text below regarding the modified civics elementary reporting requirement.)

The fully amended law now states:
(1) By the end of the 2008-09 school year, school districts shall have in place in elementary schools, middle schools, and high schools assessments or other strategies chosen by the district to assure that students have an opportunity to learn the essential academic learning requirements in social studies, the arts, and health and fitness. Social studies includes history, geography, civics, economics, and social studies skills. Beginning with the 2008-09 school year, school districts shall annually submit an implementation verification report to the office of the superintendent of public instruction. The office of the superintendent of public instruction may not require school districts to use a classroom-based assessment in social studies, the arts, and health and fitness to meet the requirements of this section and shall clearly communicate to districts their option to use other strategies chosen by the district.

(2) Beginning with the 2008-09 school year, school districts shall require students in the seventh or eighth grade, and the eleventh or twelfth grade to each complete at least one classroom-based assessment in civics. Beginning with the 2010-11 school year, school districts shall require students in the fourth or fifth grade to complete at least one classroom-based assessment in civics. The civics assessment may be selected from a list of classroom-based assessments approved by the office of the superintendent of public instruction. Beginning with the 2008-09 school year, school districts shall annually submit implementation verification reports to the office of the superintendent of public instruction documenting the use of the classroom-based assessments in civics.

(3) Verification reports shall require school districts to report only the information necessary to comply with this section.

REQUIRED REPORTING
OSPI has developed an online reporting form to assist districts with the required submission of the implementation verification report. Districts are required to report whether or not “assessments or other strategies” have been administered in social studies (including assessments in civics), the arts, and health and fitness. OSPI recommends that each district designate a staff member to be responsible for ensuring that the assessment and reporting requirements in RCW 28A.230.095 are met. Reporting can occur throughout the school year as “assessments or other strategies” are administered.

OPTIONAL REPORTING
In an effort to obtain a comprehensive picture of state implementation, OSPI is asking that school districts consider completing the optional sections of the iGrants form package 408.

The optional information includes:

  1. Which assessments or other strategies students are taking at the elementary, middle, and high school levels.
  2. How many students participated at the elementary, middle, and high school levels, and at what grades.
  3. How districts are using the assessments as an integral part of instruction and teacher professional development to assure student achievement on the state standards for the social studies, the arts, and health and fitness.

OSPI has also developed teacher worksheets to facilitate the collection of the data for this report. The worksheets are available in iGrants or on the assessment websites for social studies, the arts, and health and fitness. These forms have been useful in collecting the necessary data as well as for providing professional development opportunities focused on student progress and achievement.

Results from the optional portion of the verification report will not be posted for public review; however, they will be used by OSPI to provide future support to districts for implementation.

RECOMMENDATIONS As stated above, OSPI urges districts to use the state-developed assessments to meet the requirements of RCW 28A.230.095. These large-scale statewide assessments have been successfully piloted for validity and reliability. Further, OSPI recommends that if local assessments and/or other strategies are used, that they be reviewed for quality at the local level.

Guidance for meeting the implementation requirement is provided in the schedule below.

  • Elementary (K-5 or K-6)
    At least one assessment in health AND at least one assessment in fitness by the end of 5th grade. There are seven assessments available at the elementary level.
  • Middle School (6-8 or 6-9)
    At least one assessment in health AND at least one assessment in fitness by the end of 8th grade. There are eight assessments available at the middle school level.
  • High School (9-12)
    At least one assessment in health AND at least one assessment in fitness by the end of high school. There are seven assessments available at the high school level.


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What are OSPI-Developed Assessments?
The Health and Fitness assessments are multi-stepped tasks or projects aligned to specific state standards which target skills and knowledge necessary for a physically active and healthy lifestyle. Completing an assessment at a proficient level requires students to demonstrate that they have met specific grade level expectations by applying their understanding of health and/or fitness knowledge, concepts, and skills to a specific context that is meant to be relevant to the lives of these students.

Assessments are designed to ensure that students employ critical thinking skills and engage in their own individual analysis of health and/or fitness.

There are 22 assessments; seven are targeted for elementary school, eight for middle school, and seven for high school.

The key component of any assessment is the rubric page which spells out how a student can reach proficiency. The scoring notes section explains the rationale for scoring and the glossary has been prepared to provide consistency for each assessment.

Assessments can be used at any time of the year although they are typically used as a culminating or summative assessment of learning that has occurred during a course unit.



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Why are assessments being used?
Validity: Given the broad, conceptual nature of the Health and Fitness standards, the assessments are a valid way to assess the learning of these standards and to help students gain the knowledge and skills authentic to engaged, informed physically active and healthy lifestyle.
Coherence: District health and fitness programs will have a greater coherence if assessments are included in each of the health and fitness course units. The common rubrics ensure that students will be asked to meet rigorous expectations as they move from elementary school to middle school to high school as well as from district to district.
Balance: The assessments are designed to ensure accountability to the state’s standards while still maintaining a local district’s control over specific content in health and fitness.
Research: There is a great deal of research that indicates that having students engage regularly in rigorous, authentic, performance-based assessments, such as the assessments, increases their academic achievement in health and fitness. (e.g. the research from Cathy Taylor)
Integration: The Health and Fitness assessments are another way teachers can target important reading and writing standards in their instruction.
Accountability: The assessments and the reporting on the use of these assessments are one way the state is asking districts to ensure that all students have opportunities to meet the standards in health and fitness skills.


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When should assessments be used? At what grade level?
It is encouraged to adapt the assessments at grades 5, 8, and high school as they are aligned to the grade level expectations. However, it may be best to administer a health assessment in 7th grade health class because that is where learning is taking place and where the student will be most proficient. For practicality, some school districts choose to administer a health assessment in 4th grade and a fitness assessment in 5th grade; health assessment in 7th grade and fitness assessment in 8th grade; and health assessment in 9th grade and fitness assessment in 10th grade.


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Should every teacher within a district do the same assessment if they teach the same course or at the same grade level?
OSPI believes it is a good idea for districts to adopt a plan in which all teachers teaching the same course or working with students at the same grade level would do the same assessment. This commonality would facilitate planning within the school district.

Moreover, the flexibility of the assessments still allows each teacher to tailor any one of these assessments to the interests and needs of her/his students or community. However, it is not required that teachers choose the same assessment.


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Who is responsible for the copying costs of the assessments?
Schools will provide the copies needed per their students. The directions and prompt for each student is 1-3 pages in length. There are a few exceptions (Concepts of Health and Fitness). However, in the revised Concepts of Health and Fitness assessment, there is a student answer sheet. For most items students will provide responses on the paper that they either bring to school with them or supplied by the school. The school districts are responsible for the copying costs of the assessments.


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Who is responsible for scoring the assessments?
Each teacher will usually serve as the primary scorer of their student’s assessment responses. Therefore, it is important that teachers responsible for health and fitness teaching receive formal scoring training. In addition to this training, districts can assure that scores are more reliable if a percentage of assessment responses are scored by at least two scorers who can compare notes and resolve differences by reviewing exemplar papers. When two teachers score one assessment, this will increase reliability – however, this would be at the district’s discretion rather than being a state requirement.

When teachers score their student’s responses, both the student and teacher receive immediate feedback on what has been learned.


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What is considered a “passing” score?
Rubrics are provided in the scoring packet that indicates score points from zero to four. Students who earn a score of “3” or “4” are considered meeting minimum state standards (proficient). A score of “2” or less is considered not meeting minimum state standards.

In the scoring notes of the revised assessments, there is a minimum state standard for each assessment. For example, the passing score for New Student Orientation is twelve or more points which will indicate that the student has met minimum state standard. This is based on four 4-point rubrics found in New Student Orientation.
15 – 16 = 4 
12 – 14 = 3    meets standard (“proficient”)
8 –11 = 2 
1 – 7 = 1 


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What happens if a student fails an assessment?
Since RCW 28A.230.095 only addresses district-level accountability, there are no consequences from the state if a student does not meet proficiency on an assessment. However, we anticipate that most teachers will assign some sort of grade or credit to the work done for the assessment. Failing an assessment would indicate a student has not met the standards for health and fitness. How that factors into a student’s grade will be the decision of the classroom teacher or school district.


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Who is accountable for reporting results and what is the manner of reporting?
The results will be reported through iGrants at OSPI. Your school district will need to determine who is responsible for reporting. Send results to designated school district contact. The designated school district contact will submit the data to OSPI through iGrants. School districts are required to report to OSPI.

iGrants is an internet based system that contains a variety of federal and state grant applications, competitive grant request for proposals (RFPs), and end of year reports, as well as a comprehensive self study used for compliance reviews visitations. The acronym stands for: i=internet G=Grants r=reports a=analytical n=net-based t=transaction s=system

Complete the Final Reporting Form. This requires:

  • Logging onto the iGrants site and completing contact information.
  • Using the data collected from teachers implementing the assessments or other strategies, fill in the data in the columns for elementary school, middle school, and high school for social studies, the arts, and health and fitness.
  • Completing the assurances page through the iGrants system.
  • Considering completing and collecting the Optional Survey from teachers and submitting the information in the iGrants system.

SCHEDULE/CALENDAR

September – January:

  • Districts and schools should develop a plan for responding to RCW 28A.230.095. The plan should include which assessments or other strategies will be used and at which grade levels to meet the requirements of the law.
  • Designate a staff member to be responsible for ensuring that the assessment and reporting requirements in RCW 28A.230.095 are met.
  • Communicate with teachers responsible for providing students with assessments or other strategies in social studies, the arts, and health and fitness.

February – May:

  • Check in with teachers throughout the year to ensure that they are implementing the assessments to which they have committed.
  • Distribute downloadable data sheets to teachers (Teacher Worksheets) responsible for implementing the assessments or other strategies in their classroom.
  • Consider downloading the optional survey from iGrants or the health and fitness website. Distribute copies of these surveys to teachers, gather the information from the survey, and compile results.

May – July:

  • Collect data sheets from teachers responsible for implementing the assessments or other strategies in their classroom.
  • July 31: Final date for districts to submit data on the use of assessments or other strategies via the iGrants reporting system


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Since some assessments are classroom projects, can the students work in groups?
No, the overarching guideline for teachers administering an assessment is to ensure that each final response to an assessment is an “individual student effort.” These assessments are to be used to find out what each individual knows and is able to do; therefore, significant aspects of the performance must be done by students working independently of other students.


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How much teacher/coaching feedback is allowed as students are completing assessment responses?
Given that assessment responses should reflect a student’s own work, there needs to be a clear distinction between providing needed clarification as opposed to inappropriate assistance which could lead to an invalid representation of what a student can independently accomplish.


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How can the teacher accommodate the assessment for all students?
While the flexibility of the assessment already enables accommodations to be made without any formal guidelines, OSPI does have some recommendations on how to help all students reach proficiency on the assessments. First, all students are eligible for certain accommodations. For example, students may have as much time as they need to complete the task. In addition, students with limited writing skills may type their responses, and students with limited English-language skills may have the prompts read aloud to them. Such assistance should not include suggested responses. All students who remain productively engaged in the task should be allowed to finish their work. In some cases, a few students may require considerably more time to complete the task than most students; therefore, you may wish to move these students to a new location to finish. In other cases, the teacher’s knowledge of some students’ work habits or special needs may suggest that students who work very slowly should be tested separately or grouped with similar students for the test.

Second, students should have access to any accommodations outlined in their individualized education plans (IEPs). For a comprehensive list of possible accommodations for students participating in assessments, please read OSPI’s “Washington State’s Accommodations Guidelines for Students with Disabilities” (http://www.k12.wa.us/assessment/pubdocs/AccommodationGuidelines2008-2009.pdf).

Third, OSPI hopes to be able to provide models for differentiating instruction and assessment in these academic areas in the future.

Finally, WAC 392.172A.03090 provides additional guidelines related to assessment procedures for students in special education.


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If a student is allowed to waive physical education, is she/he expected to participate in the assessment?
It should be noted that the requirements related to assessments are not a “graduation requirement” – in other words, the state is not requiring individual students to pass an assessment in order to graduate.

The high school graduation requirements specifically states that students may be waived out of the “activity” portion of fitness, but not out of the “knowledge” portion of fitness. It would seem that students need to take the assessment to provide evidence that they have reached proficiency in the “knowledge” portion of fitness education.

Waiver means released from the class and credit (not taking physical education at all, but still being accountable for the knowledge portion as per statute).

School districts shall meet the following laws and regulations:

  • RCW 28A.150.210 – Basic Education Act – to know and apply the core concepts and principles of health and fitness
  • WAC 180-51-066 to align with current essential academic learning requirement
  • RCW 28A.230.095 shall have assessments or other strategies in health and fitness

There is no provision for a waiver from the requirement that students be assessed in health and fitness education. It is also not the intent of the law for a student to waive 2.0 credits of health and fitness in high school.

A student cannot earn physical education credit for activities such as athletics or marching band. A student can only be waived from the credits for physical education. A student must take other classes to make up for the missing credits to meet minimum high school graduation requirements.

Credit equivalency means not taking the physical education class, but replacing it with out-of-class physical education.

To earn credit equivalency, the student shall

  • Provide written documentation that verifies knowledge and application of the core concepts and principles of physical education knowledge and skills.
  • Meet the essential academic learning requirements (EALRs) in physical education.
  • Meet minimum standards in physical and cognitive assessments.

Both waiver and credit equivalency must be an adopted board policy and procedure. Credit equivalency shall be at the same rigor as demonstrated in a physical education course.


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What should a district do if students are enrolled in courses through Running Start or online health or fitness education?
It should be noted that the requirements related to assessments are not a “graduation requirement” – the state is not requiring individual students to pass an assessment in order to graduate. However, districts have always been required to ensure that all students have an opportunity to meet the standards in each of the required academic areas. If a student is participating in Running Start or an online health or fitness education course, it is presumed that the district is still ensuring that the courses taken allow them to meet the required state standards.

As stated in the previous question, credit equivalency means not taking the physical education class, but replacing it with out-of-class physical education.

To earn credit equivalency, the student shall

  • Provide written documentation that verifies knowledge and application of the core concepts and principles of physical education knowledge and skills.
  • Meet the essential academic learning requirements (EALRs) in physical education.
  • Meet minimum standards in physical and cognitive assessments.

Credit equivalency needs to be an adopted board policy and procedure and at the same rigor as students demonstrate in their classroom. The fitness portion of the requirement shall be met by course work in fitness education. The content of fitness courses shall be determined locally pursuant to WAC 180-51-025.


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How can the results of the assessments be used to help improve teaching and learning?
Assessments can inform instruction to improve teaching and learning. Questions might include: What did the teacher learn from the student responses? How can this be used to improve future classroom instruction? The information that is acquired through classroom assessment should be actively used to improve future instruction and assessment.


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Can I use a Fitness Performance Assessment (mile, push-up, sit-up, etc.) in place of an OSPI-Developed Fitness Assessment?
In short, no. The assessment is measuring cognitive knowledge. The mile is showing the student the time it takes to run the mile. What has the student learned? In this case, the student has learned the time that it took for him/her to run the mile (8 minutes and 43 seconds). The assessment is application of the information – taking it to the next level. Did the student really “get” the knowledge and can he/she apply the information?

Where can teachers find opportunities for training on scoring the assessments?
As requested, OSPI will provide assessment training at the Washington Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (WAHPERD) State Conference; Physical Education Activity Kaleidoscope (PEAK) Conference; West’s Best Conference; and other state organizations.

OSPI recommends that health and physical education teachers attend assessment training; however, this training is not mandatory to score the assessment.

For more information, contact Lisa Kloke at lisa.kloke@k12.wa.us or 360-725-4977.


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