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Published in Print: November 24, 1999, as Department Releases Title I Testing Guidance

Department Releases Title I Testing Guidance

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The Department of Education is offering guidance on evaluating state assessment systems for Title I students.

Under amendments Congress made to the Title I law when it was last reauthorized in 1994, the department will use teams of testing experts to review state assessment systems for compliance. States are required to put assessment systems in place for Title I—which provides academic help for students from low-income households—for the 2000-01 school year.

Follow Up
Free copies of the guidance document can be obtained by calling (202)260-0826. It will also be posted on the Education Department's World Wide Web site, www.ed.gov

The guidance document, released Nov. 10, includes sample questions for peer reviewers as they examine a state's ability to assess and disseminate results for populations of disadvantaged children. The Education Department is mailing the document to chief state school officers.

Peer-review teams will evaluate each state's assessment system to ensure that Title I students are being held to the same standards as other students, and that those standards are aligned to academic content and performance-based. According to the department, states will be required to show they have a variety of strategies to ensure that every student, including those with limited English proficiency or disabilities, have the appropriate accommodations to gauge their skills. The document also instructs states on how to determine the best way to assess an LEP student's skills, which has been a major concern of Education Department officials.

—Joetta L. Sack

Vol. 19, Issue 13, Page 23

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