|This article was
printed in the February 2003 issue of Home Rules
Testing Your Children
By Wanetta Vader
Many homeschooling parents are concerned as to whether or not their children
are working at the same grade level as their "public schooled"
counterparts and want to know where and how they can have their children
tested. If you are concerned about how your homeschooled children are
doing academically - or are just curious - here are some options:
Grade 3, 6, 9 Assessments and the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test
(given in Grade 10)
As stated in Policy/Program Memorandum No. 131 homeschooled students can
access the standardized assessments/tests that are given to students in
the public school system which are administered by the Education Quality
and Accountability Office (EQAO). Parents must contact their local school
board for information about the dates, times and locations of these assessments/tests.
There is no fee for homeschooling children to take these assessments/tests.
The results will be sent by the EQAO to the school where the test was
taken and the school, in turn, will send the results directly to the parents.
These results will not be included in the school and board reports generated
by the EQAO or by the schools and boards.
To view samples of the various assessments/tests, visit the EQAO website
at: http://www.eqao.com - a) Sample Units for Grade 3 and 6 Assessments
of Reading, Writing and Mathematics; b) Sample Items for Assessment Preparation
for Grade 9 Assessment of Mathematics; c) Example Test Booklet for the
Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test.
Canadian Test Centre (CTC) Educational Assessment Services
The CTC is a wholly Canadian-owned and operated educational assessment
service and publisher. CTC has developed three nationally standardized
tests: Canadian Achievement Tests (CAT), Canadian Test of Cognitive Skills
(CTCS) and Canadian Achievement Survey Tests for Adults. These tests are
used by schools and colleges across Canada.
On the website there is a specific link entitled "Information for
Home- schoolers". Homeschooling parents can purchase the CAT and
the CTCS tests to administer to their children.
The CAT (for grade placement between end of Grade 1 through to Grade 12)
indicates how the child is doing in comparison with others at the same
grade level across Canada and provides a profile of strengths and needs
in reading, language, spelling, mathematics and writing.
The CTCS (for grade placement from mid Grade 2 through to Grade 12) compares
the learning abilities or cognitive skills of the child with others at
the same age and grade across Canada and assesses learning skills in sequences,
analogies, memory and verbal reasoning.
Contact Information: Canadian Test Centre, 85 Citizen Court, Suites 7
& 8, Markham, Ontario, L6G 1A8, Telephone: (905) 513-6636 or 1-800-668-1006,
Fax: (905) 513-6639, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org,
There are consultants who provide testing among many other educational
services. Please check in your local area to determine if a educational
consultant is located near you. Here are two that I am aware of:
Wise Choice Educational Services
29 Albert St., Barrie, Ont., L4M 3S7, Telephone: (705) 726-5971, Fax:
(705) 726-5958, Email: email@example.com,
Provides services such as professional assessments, reading therapy and
tutoring, teacher and parent training, and standardized testing.
Scholastic Testing Services
Eleanor Davis, 7047 Jura Line, R.R. #1, Forest, Ontario, N0N 1J0, Telephone:
(519) 786-5838, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Provides testing in the following areas: reading readiness, reading, spelling,
language, mathematics, reference skills, diagnostic tests for learning
gaps. The test is mailed to your home; the parent administers the test
to their child following the instructions given; the parent returns the
test(s) to be processed; a report with recommendations plus the test results
will be mailed back to the parent.
Sylvan Learning Centres
Sylvan Learning Centres provide personalized instructional services to
students of all ages and skill levels. Visit the website or call the toll-free
number to find the location of a Sylvan Learning Centre near you. A Sylvan
Learning Centre provides many services such as - personalized instruction,
reading, writing and math programs, study skills and SAT prep programs,
homework support and testing services.
The Turnbull School
1132 Fisher Ave. Ottawa, Ont., K1Z 6P7, Telephone: (613) 729-9940, Fax:
(613) 729-1636, Email: email@example.com,
This private school (Kindergarten to Grade 8) provides educational services
such as tutoring, testing/educational assessments and summer programs
through the Turnbull Learning Centre.
Nelson Thomson Learning
1120 Birchmount Road, Toronto, Ontario M1K 5G4, Telephone Toll Free: 1-800-268-2222
or (416) 752-9448, Fax Toll Free: 1-800-430-4445 or (416) 752-8101, Email:
firstname.lastname@example.org, Website: http://www.nelson.com
Thomson Nelson carries the Canadian Achievement Tests (CAT) and the Canadian
Test of Basic Skills (CTBS). The CTBS can be given to the child by the
parent who would then interpret the results. The CTBS is a comprehensive
test of academic achievement and is a Canadian revision of the widely
used U.S. Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS). The CTBS tests in the following
areas: Reading, Language Skills and Math Concepts. The CTBS can be used
for grade levels 3 to 12.
Please note that Thomson Nelson will not sell these tests to individual
families. They would have to be purchased by a group such as a homeschooling
support organization. For example, I was made aware of a support group
in Eastern Ontario that purchases a quantity of these tests and they,
in turn, sell them to their members at a small fee to cover the cost of
purchasing this test.
There are a wide variety of curriculum packages available for the various
grade levels. Most of these curriculum packages contain tests that the
child can take to determine if they are competent in the material they
have been working on. Please visit the OFTP website under the heading
"Resources" for more information on the variety of curriculum
that is available.
Some educational stores stock sample tests, along with other curriculum
material, that a homeschooling parent can purchase and administer to their
children. For example, there is an educational store in my area that carries
prep tests for the Grade 3 and 6 assessments that are administered in
the public schools on a yearly basis.
A variety of sample tests can be downloaded from the Internet.