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Community Informed Information Gathering Process at Kindergarten

Oregon’s Kindergarten Assessment was suspended in the 2019-20 and 2020-21 school years due to the complicated nature of the pandemic. The assessment was previously administered each fall to entering kindergartners to assess three core areas of learning and development: early literacy, early math and interpersonal/self-regulation skills. Prior to the suspension, community partners shared concerns related to the implementation of the assessment as well as bias within the assessment itself. In partnership with the Early Learning Division, the Department began addressing these concerns during the 2021-22 school year.
The process to redesign Oregon’s Kindergarten Assessment is called the Early Learning Transition Check-In: A Collaborative Engagement with Community (ELTC). 
The reimagined process has three distinct purposes:
  • Collect a statewide snapshot of data about children and families as they begin kindergarten
  • Support families in building relationships with their kindergarten educators
  • Inform state-level decisions about Oregon’s Early Learning System
The process honors the whole child and the assets they bring and allows for stronger relationships to be built between educators, families and students starting at the beginning of a student’s K-12 career as opposed to an assessment that may ultimately serve as a barrier that also has long-term impact on the connection between school and home.
Questions about the Community Informed Information Gathering Process at Kindergarten? Contact ODE’s K-2 Balanced Assessment Specialist, Sody Fearn.

Oregon’s State Board of Education unanimously adopted the amended rule OAR 581-022-2130 on February 16, 2023. The changes positively impact students and their families in Oregon. Notable changes include:

  • Language shifts that intentionally frame students and families using an asset-based approach.
  • Centering equity and anti-racist practices by shifting to a culturally responsive method that allows for stronger relationships to be built beginning at a child’s K-12 career as opposed to an assessment that may ultimately serve as a barrier and create long-term impact on the connection between school and home.
  • Removing the word “assessment” from the title and language in order to reinforce the new approach: Community Informed Information Gathering Process.
  • Allowing for flexibility to include other future culturally responsive components that are deemed necessary through our engagement process with partners.

A report about the Fall 2022 Pilot as well as ODE and the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC)’s response can be found at the Early Learning Transition Check -In: A Collaborative Engagement with Community website.

In addition, the training process has begun with school districts across Oregon who have volunteered to join the Fall 2023 Pilot: Family Conversation. 

Upon pilot completion, families and educators will be asked to join community conversations with an independent contractor. The purposes of these conversations are:

  • to hear about people’s experiences with the family component 
  • to hear about ideas people have for future family components
  • to understand how families and educators think the process might work better for families and schools in coming years
Another report will be published with recommendations that will influence the direction of the Family Conversation.

School districts who do not volunteer for the Fall 2023 pilot should not administer any components of the previous kindergarten assessment. Please read Assessment and Accountability Updates for future opportunities to be involved in this process.

Broader community engagements will take place during the 2023-24 school year. Please email with any questions you may have about this topic. 


Interpretive Guidance


These reports show the school, district, and state level results from the Oregon Kindergarten Assessment.

The Look-Back report is an update to the Kindergarten Assessment Results and includes disaggregated student results for three additional student groups: Economically Disadvantaged students, Limited English Proficient students, and Students with Disabilities. Data aggregation is based on Third Period Cumulative ADM Collections (data verified in August of the following year). This report also contains the previously-reported disaggregated data by student gender and ethnicity.


Kindergarten Transition