Committee Liaisons & Representatives: DAS Advisory Committee /
Type: Open Committee
Focus Areas: High Quality Student Evaluations
Upcoming dates or events to share with general membership
Discussions included overview of the ESSA State Plan, Benchmark Assessments and the RFI process, M-STEP Social Studies, and Early Literacy Benchmark Assessments and Accommodations for students with disabilities.
ESSA states a benchmark assessment can be used as a summative assessment as long as it meets a series of summative assessment criteria. All vendors interviewed during the RFI process stated they would not recommend a benchmark assessment also be used as a summative. Also, the 3rd grade reading bill would make it very hard to not have a separate summative assessment.
Benchmark/Interim Assessments are optional for Kindergarten and required for 1st and 2nd grade. If not using the MDE Benchmark Assessment, then districts may choose their own but must meet criteria and must be aligned with the M-STEP summative assessment in the Spring.
Accommodations are available for the MDE Benchmark Assessment. It was developed with UDL in mind and so Kindergarten and 1st grade assessment has voice audio for all students, and then 2nd grade has a combination of voice audio and Text to Speech, in order to prepare for 3rd grade M-Step. If students require additional accommodations like oversized keyboard or mouse that can be provided and should be written in the IEP. MDE is currently looking at developing a paper version of the benchmark assessment to accommodate braille needs. Any other accommodations can be requested at the email@example.com
There is a Students with Disabilities Committee that is charged with identifying approved accommodations for the benchmark assessment.
Districts using their own assessment must go by that assessments approved accommodations. DAS will put together a survey to identify the other assessments that are being used as a benchmark assessment and have GELN distribute.
M-STEP: for 2016-17, 3rd and 4th grade tests will use UEB braille whereas 5th-11th will use the braille versions currently listed as approved. Each year, the grades will bump up since UEB is the new approved braille. Staff can contact MDE for practice booklets that contain UEB braille.