April 16, 2021
OSSLT field test a multi-faceted opportunity for NNDSB
Near North District School Board (NNDSB) is proud to be one of a handful of school board’s participating in this year’s optional field test of the new online Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT).
The field test, which runs between March and June, allows students in Grades 10 and 11, and non-graduating Grade 12 students, to attempt the test and, if successful, have it counted on their transcript. If the student is not successful, it does not count against them since this year is a trial of the new system.
Earlier this school year, the Ministry of Education waived the literacy graduation requirement for all students graduating during the 2020-2021 school year. Graduating students do not need to take the field test.
Field testing allows students and educators to become accustomed to the new assessment model. This pilot time also benefits the board’s IT department with the implementation of a new system-wide format.
Working collaboratively with EQAO’s support services, NNDSB technology staff continue to ensure both computers and the backend system can withstand the format. The field test also assesses the bandwidth and security measures for the deployment of a safe exam browser (SEB) on all school devices used to administer the test.
NNDSB Technology Department Manager Glenn Morrison says, “Once we understood and clarified the requirements with the support folks at EQAO, our IT department teams were responsive and did great work to ensure these network requirements were met and the required client software was installed where needed. Feedback received from those schools who have recently completed OSSLT testing was very positive”
This pilot will replace the former written by hand assessment and is slated to roll out across all provincial school boards for the 2021-2022 school year. These digitized assessments can be adaptive and allow for a more student-focused experience, which in turn helps to reduce test anxiety and allows students the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge in different ways.
The new online OSSLT is only available for students learning in-person, because a proctor is required to supervise the assessment. During the time of COVID-19, proper cleaning and room schedules ensure cohorts are not cross-contaminated.
Families, students, and staff can view the online test and its platform through EQAO’s online practice test.
Information about Near North District School Board:
Near North District School Board is an English-language public school board serving the North Bay – Parry Sound – Nipissing area. The Board consists of approximately 10,000 students in 27 elementary schools, seven secondary/senior schools and various alternative learning centres. For more information, please visit nearnorthschools.ca and follow Near North District School Board on social media.
For more information, please contact:
Near North District School Board
P. (705) 472-8170, extension 5083