Orientation to Alaska’s Alternate Assessment for Special Education Directors - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Orientation to Alaska’s Alternate Assessment for Special Education Directors

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  1. Orientation to Alaska’s Alternate Assessment for Special Education Directors Aran Felix, Alaska Department of Education Special Education Director Conference, Anchorage, Alaska ~ September 26, 2008 Special Education Directors Conference

  2. Topics What are alternate assessments? Who takes alternate assessments? Importance of having a Qualified Mentor Trainer in your district Why is training important? Test Security Role of District Test Coordinators with Alternate Assessment Highlights of Teacher Survey Resources Special Education Directors Conference

  3. What is an Alternate Assessment? Special Education Directors Conference

  4. What are alternate assessments? Designed for certain small group of students with disabilities Students must meet eligibility criteria Requirement that alternate assessments be academic in nature like general education tests Test items linked to grade level content standards Test items reduced in complexity Special Education Directors Conference

  5. Alaska’s Alternate Assessment Part of the Comprehensive System of Student Assessments (CSSA) Designed for a special population of students with disabilities (SWD) The students with significant cognitive disabilities 1 to 2% of the student population (approximately 550 students) Special Education Directors Conference

  6. Alaska’s Alternate Assessment Items and website developed in Oregon 8 years ago Items & website used in Alaska 3 years and test items “Alaskanized” Performance Tasks: Reading, Writing, Math & Science Online System Includes: System Requirements, FAQ’s, Help Desk Contact Teacher Training & Proficiency Modules Online Training Manuals Secure Test Materials & Practice Test Scoring & Reporting Unofficial student report generated immediately Special Education Directors Conference

  7. What does “Alaskanized” mean? • Extended Grade Level Expectations (ExGLEs) developed by Alaska teachers (content experts and special educators) • Linked to Grade Level Expectations (GLEs) • ExGLEs used to guide curriculum and test item development • Proficiency Level Descriptors • Standard Setting Special Education Directors Conference

  8. Alternate Assessments for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities Curriculum Based Measures: Reading Mathematics Writing Science Administered by the teacher on a one-to-one basis with a student Special Education Directors Conference

  9. One-on-one AcademicPerformance Task Assessments Standard tasks and scoring procedures Ratings that evaluate independent performance while focusing on knowing and doing Aligned to standards and instruction Scores can be aggregated and reported as group summaries Special Education Directors Conference

  10. Reading Naming Letters, Pictures Blending Sounds Reading Words, Names, Sentences Reading Text Orally Reading and Listening Comprehension Special Education Directors Conference

  11. Writing Copying Letters Copying Words Dictated Words Dictated Sentences Writing Sentences Story Writing Special Education Directors Conference

  12. Math Naming/copying numbers Counting & writing numerals Shapes/telling time Naming, counting money Manipulatives & computation Special Education Directors Conference

  13. Science Concepts of Physical Science Concepts of Life Science Concepts of Earth Science History and Nature of Science, Science and Technology Special Education Directors Conference

  14. Who takes the new Alternate Assessments? Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities Students with IEPs that indicate the alternate assessment Special Education Directors Conference

  15. Approximately 1% of the Student Population Takes Alternate AssessmentsSlide courtesy of National Alternate Assessment Center The number of students participating in alternate assessments on alternate achievement standards as compared to the total population of student learners and students with disabilities… Special Education Directors Conference

  16. Making Decisions about Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities Students with significant cognitive disabilities (SSCD) will have access to, participate in, and make progress in the general education curriculum. SSCD must participate in statewide assessments in all grades 3 – 10 No testing in grades 11, 12 for SSCD AA is for students on a non-diploma track Special Education Directors Conference

  17. Specifics of Eligibility Criteria in Alaska Eligibility Criteria is located in the Participation Guidelines for Alaska Students in State Assessments, September 2007 edition, Pages 7-9 Parental notification of Alternate required Special Education Directors Conference

  18. Where to find the Participation Criteria for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities: Participation Guidelines You can find this as a booklet, on the EED website http://www.eed.state.ak.us/tls/assessment/accommodations.html Special Education Directors Conference

  19. Parent Notification on the IEP, Page 8 of 12 Non-Diploma Track Parent Signature Special Education Directors Conference

  20. What about the students with the most profound disabilities? How does this assessment work for them? Special Education Directors Conference

  21. Because we know these students are more different than alike… The total student population receiving special education services broken down by disability category… SOURCE: Education Week analysis of data from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, Data Analysis System, 2002-03. Special Education Directors Conference

  22. Expanded Levels of Support (ELOS) Items Follow administration rules explained in Alternate Assessment Manual Administration Rules govern standard test administration and ELOS items All students take standard test items every year Some students move to the ELOS items ELOS items improve student access to the test New ELOS items being written that are better aligned to Extended Grade Level Expectations Special Education Directors Conference

  23. Only Qualified Assessors may administer the Alternate Assessment Why training is important

  24. Why training is important:Score ReliabilityWould results be the same . . if the assessment were administered by someone else? Special Education Directors Conference

  25. Why training is important:VALIDITY and Fairness Would assessment results accurately show what a student knows and can do? Special Education Directors Conference

  26. A standard approach to administration and scoring leads to: Fair assessments Comparable scores between assessors and settings An accurate picture of what the student knows and can do Special Education Directors Conference

  27. How is training provided? Orientation by a qualified trainer or EED Self-paced online training & Proficiency achieved Qualifying practice test with a student Certificate of qualification Coaching and peer support Special Education Directors Conference

  28. Importance of Alternate Assessment Qualified Mentor Trainers for districts Special Education Directors Conference

  29. How many AA Mentors per district? EED recommends one mentor per district and more for large districts State pays for one mentor to attend training—some exceptions At the minimum, a district needs to have a Qualified Assessor No students eligible for Alternate Assessment? What happens if a student transfers in? Special Education Directors Conference

  30. Step 1: Become a Qualified Assessor Must be school personnel (teacher or paraprofessional) Meet qualifications: Complete online training Pass online proficiencies Administer a practice test Submit scoring protocols for evaluation Special Education Directors Conference

  31. Step 2 is not for everyone: Become a Qualified Mentor Trainer Hold a Qualified Assessor Certificate Attend annual mentor training Train a protégé to the Qualified Assessor level Submit the protégé’s scoring protocols to vendor for evaluation Special Education Directors Conference

  32. District Requirements • Providing assessments to ALL students is a state and federal requirement • Providing district personnel time to learn how to properly administer assessments is a district requirement • Provide mentors time to train district personnel • Provide time for district personnel to become proficient online • Provide time for district personnel to give a practice assessments • Provide time for qualified assessors to prepare and adapt assessment materials Special Education Directors Conference

  33. Annual RequirementsOnce a QA(QT), always a QA(QT) Must refresh skills annually as designated in the AA Manual Sign Test Security Agreement QAs-If not assessing a student that year, must still refresh skills QTs-If not training a protégé that year, must still refresh skills Special Education Directors Conference

  34. Why is there so much training to administer the Alternate Assessment? Proctors administer Standards Based Assessments (SBAs) but do not score the assessments Qualified Assessors administer and score adapt materials if necessary decide on appropriate assistive technology Special Education Directors Conference

  35. Test Security • Role of District Test Coordinator • Test Security Agreement • General Test Security guidelines • Online Test Security Special Education Directors Conference

  36. Role of District Test Coordinator • DTCs are responsible for ensuring that all eligible students are provided the proper assessment • DTCs and special education need to work together to make sure this information is correct • DTCs are in charge of test security • DTCs maintain copies of Test Security Agreements Special Education Directors Conference

  37. Test Security Agreement 2007-2008 Alaska Comprehensive System of Student Assessment Alternate Assessment Test Security Agreement For Testing Personnel, Qualified Assessors, Qualified Mentor Trainers • According to regulation 4 AAC 06.765 (f) “school and district personnel responsible for test administration shall annual execute an agreement, on a form provided by the department, affirming that they will follow the test procedures required under this section.” Special Education Directors Conference

  38. Test Security • Review Handouts • General Guidelines • Online Test Security Special Education Directors Conference

  39. Demo site: http://ak.k12test.com/ • Visitors may view a demo by entering the word demo into both the email and password boxes to the right (demo must be all lower case in the password box). Teachers who want to become Qualified Assessors must register as a new user. Special Education Directors Conference

  40. Home Page:http://ak.k12test.com/ Special Education Directors Conference

  41. Teacher Survey • Purpose: The goal of this survey is to better understand the impact that Alaska’s alternate assessment is having on the educational programs of students with significant cognitive disabilities, and to discover if the assessment system works efficiently for educators. We would like to hear from Qualified Assessors and Qualified Mentor-Trainers on a number of issues that relate to the administration of the assessment and use of the results. Special Education Directors Conference

  42. Highlights - six areas addressed A. Training and Qualification B. Test Administration and Decision Making C. Accessibility and Results D. Instructional Relevance E. Professional Development Needs F. Teacher Demographics and Experiences Special Education Directors Conference

  43. Highlights from Survey • Positive comments about training • Training required 4-8 hours, sometimes more • Most districts provided time to become proficient • Majority felt that decisions about when to administer ELOS items were clear Special Education Directors Conference

  44. Highlights from Survey • 30% felt the materials need to be organized differently • Most had sufficient time to prepare materials and administer the test • 25% felt that scoring criteria not always clear • Majority felt that test administration was easy Special Education Directors Conference

  45. Highlights from Survey • Majority agreed that test items are accessible and relevant • Over 40% felt that the results do not accurately represent student’s progress on Extended GLEs • Student reports easy to interpret Special Education Directors Conference

  46. Highlights from Survey • 60% agreed that AA content is related to classroom instruction • 60% said they do not spend more time teaching academics after giving AA, nor raise expectations for academic achievement • Many expressed a need for professional development in balancing instruction in functional skills & academics Special Education Directors Conference

  47. Resources • Aran Felix,Alternate Assessment Program Manager, #907-465-8437, Email: aran.felix@alaska.gov • DRA Help Desk: Sevrina Tindal, Phone: 1-800-838-3163, Fax: 815-717-9683 sevrina@dillardresearchassociates.com • Other Mentors, list updated annually and located at: http://www.eed.state.ak.us/tls/assessment/alternate_optional.html Special Education Directors Conference

  48. Discussion & Questions Thank you! Please fill out your evaluation and turn in as you leave. Special Education Directors Conference