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MRA Assessment Framework

The Molalla River Academy Assessment Framework articulates a balanced system of assessment that:


  • Aligns with Oregon Common Core, NGSS and local standards;

  • Supports our charter school’s mission, values, and philosophy of learning;

  • Provides assessment information that is compatible with information from previous grades;

  • Provides students, their parents and teachers, and administrators with information about student achievement;

  • Provides formative data to be used by Teachers and Administrators for instructional and programmatic improvements;

  • Supports the requirements of the Educator Evaluation System, and

  • Utilizes an array of assessment methods to determine the understandings, knowledge, and skills that students have acquired.

The Essential Role of Assessment in Curriculum and Instruction

Molalla River Academy uses a combination of standardized curriculum (Bridges, CPM, Great Body Shop, Units of Study, Amplify science. Active Social Science) and  project-based and creative theme-based units that combine art and science elements to structure curriculum, instruction, and assessment. Standards/curriculum, instruction, and assessment are inextricably intertwined in the learning process—one component cannot function well without the other. Optimally, the three components work together to produce high levels of student achievement.


  • Standards and curriculum answer the question, “What do we teach?” State standards and curriculum created and/or adopted by MRA define what we expect students to know, understand, and be able to do. The curriculum articulates a progression of learning goals that is aligned with state standards.


  • Instruction answers the question, “How do we teach?” It includes the learning experiences, ways of engaging student interest, and means by which teachers differentiate those experiences to scaffold student learning. To be most effective, teachers employ powerful learning strategies (e.g., writing across the curriculum, Project‐Based Learning, inquiry, outdoor learning strategies, Orff music philosophy, critical and creative thinking, integration of technology, and interdisciplinary curriculum).


  • Assessment answers the question, “How well do we teach?” Assessment measures the attainment of learning and provides data that is used formatively, that is, to inform any needed changes in curriculum or instruction for individual students or collectively for grades or content areas. This includes data that is used to determine individual student’s needs for intervention or enrichment/acceleration.


A balanced assessment system employs a variety of measures and types of assessment to provide the most useful information to students, parents, teachers, administrators, legislators, and the public.

  • Formative assessment provides immediate usable feedback on student learning.

  • Interim (or benchmark) assessments serve as “checkpoints” for longer-term student progress.

  • Summative assessments allow a look back at the entirety of the instructional period. They provide valuable information for planning the next instructional year and beyond. (ODE)

Measuring Student Growth

Each fall, winter and spring teachers administer benchmark assessments in literacy and math. Historically these assessment have included Running Records, a Spelling Inventory, a Writing Sample, and a curriculum based math assessment. Beginning in 2022-23, these paper and pencil assessments are replaced with a computerized MAPS assessment for students in grades 1st-8th. Results from these assessments are used to inform instructional decisions and to provide targeted interventions that meet individual student needs. 

To learn more about MAP (Measurement of Academic Progress) please click HERE

The Oregon state assessment will still occur each spring for students in grades 3-8.

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