School Improvement in Maryland

How do I support my child in being successful on the High School Assessments?

Over thirty years of research show that early and active involvement by a parent throughout their child’s education—helping with homework, talking about school, attending school activities—is the most powerful influence and has benefits that reach far beyond a student’s preK-12 years. Parent interest in supporting their child’s success on state assessments gives students a huge advantage.

State tests assess the Maryland Content Standards that describe what students are expected to know and be able to do and teachers are expected to teach these standards at the appropriate grade level or course. Assessment items on the state assessments should be an extension of classroom instruction and assessments. Consequently, the best way to support your child in being successful on state assessments is to support their active engagement in core classes and monitor their progress in those classes. This would include asking your child what he/she was learning; showing an interest in class work, homework, and test results; and talking to the teacher whenever you need more information about your child’s mastery of the content standards. Though report card grades will be useful information in assessing how well your child performed in that class, you would not want to wait until a nine week quarter had been completed to find out if your child was struggling and needed help in any area.

Where can my child find help?

Each local school system has developed intervention strategies to help students master content in the three HSA content areas. For more information about those intervention strategies, contact your school system's Local Accountability Coordinator. Parents can also contact their child’s school to find out what help is being offered.

In addition to local school system intervention activities, MSDE has created a series of free, hybrid courses in the HSA subjects to help students review tested material. Parents can go over course content with their child; teachers can use the courses as part of their instruction or as an intervention strategy; students can take the courses on their own to review material that will be tested.

Parents can access the Government Hybrid Course by visiting the MSDE's eConnect: Adult and Student Learning!