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GAO Studies Testing of Special-Needs Students

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The vast majority of students with disabilities take part in statewide assessments required under the No Child Left Behind Act, but states are having a more difficult time creating and administering alter-native assessments for students who need them, a federal report suggests.

The Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress, evaluated reading tests given during the 2003-2004 school year. During that time, at least 95 percent of students with disabili-ties were included in tests in 41 of the 49 states that provided data. However, state officials told the GAO that they needed more examples of alternative assessments and more information on how to ad-minister such tests properly.

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