Ahead of the Curve provides a comprehensive view of the challenges of assessmentfrom a classroom, system, and leadership standpointand examines the many perspectives of effective assessment design and implementation. The distinguished contributors to this volume support the premise that the fundamental purpose of assessment is not to rate, rank, and sort students, but rather to provide meaningful feedback that leads to improved performance. The authors believe that assessment is most productive when its purpose is for learning rather than for simply measuring it. Section 1 explores the issues of classroom assessment. Section 2 considers the challenges of system-level assessment. Section 3 considers specific assessment challenges for English language learners and special needs students. Section 4 addresses the issues of assessment leadership. And the epilogue presents a powerful example of assessment excellence in action.