Excellence for Every Child

Elementary and Middle School
 
TN Ready – April 17 – May 5 (paper only) Subpart I for ELA (which includes the writing prompt) must be administered during the first week of the three week window. All other subparts will be tested based on school preference.
 
 
High School
 
TN Ready
Fall Block (paper only) – November 28 – December 16 Subpart I for ELA (which includes the writing prompt) must be administered during the first week of the three week window. All other subparts will be tested based on school preference.
 
Spring Block and Yearlong Courses (choice of online or paper) - April 17 – May 5 Subpart I for ELA (which includes the writing prompt) must be administered during the first week of the three week window. All other subparts will be tested based on school preference.
 
ASSESSMENT CALENDAR FOR 2016-2017 SCHOOL YEAR
Assessment NameAdministration2016–17 Administration Window
Required Assessments
TCAP End of CourseFall BlockNovember 28–December 16
Spring Block/Spring Traditionalpage1image15920
April 17–May 5

TCAP Grades 3–8
(The social studies field test will also be administered during this window.)

 
Spring

April 17–May 5

TCAP-Alt* Grades 3–11 (MSAA & Sci/SS)

Spring

March 6–May 12

ACT (Grade 11)

page1image26584

Spring

March 21 April 19 (make–up)

TCAP ELA Grades 3–8 Writing Field Test**              

page1image31168

Spring

page1image32520

March–TBD

TCAP EOC
U.S. History/Geography Written Response Field Test**

Spring

March–TBD

NAEP

page1image39008

Winter/Spring

page1image40360

January 30–March10

Optional Assessments

Grade 2***

page1image45088

Spring

page1image46440

April 24–May 5

Grade 2 Field Test (with 3rd graders)

Fall

September 19–23

Grade 2-Alt Field Test (with 3rd graders)

page1image53144

Fall

October 24–October 28

TCAP-Alt for social studies/science (Grades 3–8), Biology Field Test

Fall

October 17–November 4

ACT Senior Retake (Grade 12)****

Fall

October 22

PISA/TIMSS

Fall

TBD

 

* TCAP-Alt includes alternative assessments available to students with disabilities for whom participation in the regular state assessment is inappropriate, even with the use of extensive accommodations. Approximately one percent of the student population will participate in alternative assessments.

** Approximately, one-half to one–third of schools and districts will be required to participate in these field tests on a rotating basis every two to three years.

*** Participation in Grade 2 operational assessment is a district option.

**** Participation is limited to seniors who took the ACT as a junior. 
 
ACT – Senior Retake Opportunity
Seniors with a previous ACT attempt will be issued a voucher that will cover the cost of the ACT exam at any national test center on October 22, 2016 ONLY. All students must register themselves for the ACT Exam. The registration deadline for this national test date is Friday, September 16, 2016. Retake vouchers will allow registration for this test date only. No late fees will be covered if the registration deadline is missed. Vouchers will be received by the district and then promptly shared with your school’s ACT contact. Student scores from those participating in the ACT Retake Opportunity will be included in district accountability if the retake composite score is the student’s highest score.
 

KCS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL ASSESSMENT DATES (SY1617) (8/2/2016)

page1image2128

State Required Assessments

RTI2 Universal Screening Assessment #1

page1image5104 page1image5528

8/8-31/2016 (window)

RTI2 Universal Screening Assessment #2

12/1-22/2016 (window)

TCAP Achievement ELA Writing Field Test (3rd-5th)

March 2017 (selected districts TBD)

page1image13400 page1image13824

TCAP Achievement (3rd-5th) (ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies field test)

4/17-5/5/2017 (window)

TCAP Achievement (3rd-5th) (ELA Subpart 1 – Writing)

page1image18216 page1image18640

4/17-21/2017 (window)

RTI2 Universal Screening Assessment #3

page1image22112 page1image22536

TBD

page1image23624 page1image24048
page1image25880 page1image26040 page1image26200

National and/or Local Assessments

ACCESS for ELL (WIDA) (K-5th ELL Students)

3/6-4/21/2017 (window)

NAEP (Nat’l Assessment of Educational Progress) (4th)

2/7-3/9/2017 (selected schools)

KCS MIDDLE SCHOOL ASSESSMENT DATES (SY1617) (8/2/2016)

page2image2136

State Required Assessments

RTI2 Universal Screening Assessment #1

page2image5112 page2image5536

8/8-31/2016 (window)

RTI2 Universal Screening Assessment #2

12/1-22/2016 (window)

page2image10112 page2image10536

TCAP Achievement ELA Writing Field Test (6th-8th)

March 2017 (selected districts TBD)

TCAP Achievement (6th-8th) (ELA, Math, Science, & Social Studies field test)

4/17-5/5/2017 (window)

TCAP Achievement (6th-8th) (ELA Subpart 1 – Writing)

page2image18264 page2image18688

4/17-21/2017 (window)

RTI2 Universal Screening Assessment #3

TBD

page2image23672 page2image24096
page2image25960 page2image26120 page2image26280

National and/or Local Assessments

ACCESS for ELL (WIDA) (6th-8th ELL Students)

3/6-4/21/2017 (window)

NAEP (Nat’l Assessment of Educational Progress) (8th)

2/7-3/9/2017 (selected schools)

MS Honors Midterms

12/19-21/2016

MS Finals for HS Credit Courses

5/10-12/2017

*EOC subjects will follow the same Math and Science timelines above.

KCS HIGH SCHOOL ASSESSMENT DATES (SY1617) (8/2/2016)

page3image2072

GRADES 9-12 TCAP END-OF-COURSE (EOC) - Fall Block

English I/II/III, Algebra I/II, Geometry, Biology, Chemistry, US History

page3image5936

11/28-12/16/2016 (window)

English I/II/III & US History Subpart 1 (Writing)

page3image9512

11/28-12/2/2016 (window)

page3image11064 page3image11488
page3image13088 page3image13248

GRADES 9-12 TCAP END-OF-COURSE (EOC) – Spring Block and Year Long

English I/II/III, Algebra I/II, Geometry, Biology, Chemistry, US History

page3image17232

4/17-5/5/2017 (window)

English I/II/III & US History Subpart 1 (Writing)

page3image20024

4/17-4/21/2017 (window)

US History Field Test

page3image24288

March 2017 (selected districts TBD)

page3image25536 page3image25960
page3image27608 page3image27768

National and/or Local Assessments

ACCESS for ELL (WIDA) (9th-12th ELL Students)

page3image31640

3/6-4/21/2017 (window)

page3image33192

Fall Term Local EOC

12/20-21/2016 (Make-ups 12/22/2017)

page3image35864

ACT – Senior Retake Day *(NEW) (Participation is limited to seniors who previously took the ACT.)

10/22/2016

ACT – Statewide Date (11th Grade)

page3image41472

3/21/2017 (Make-ups 4/19/2017)

page3image42640

AP Testing (for participating students)

5/1-12/2017

page3image45696

Spring Term Local EOC

(Senior Exams will be May 11-12 and May 15 for Make-ups)

page3image48680
 
 

Parent Guide to TNReady

Supports for Students

with Disabilitihe 2016-17 School Year

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Understanding Accommodations Accommodations vs. Modifications State Assessment Accommodations Who Decides?

Selecting Accommodations Evaluating Accommodations

Questions Teams Should Ask about Assessment Accommodations

Guide to Choosing Accommodations Everyone Deserves Input

As a parent of a child with a disability, you are involved in making decisions about services for your child. This guide is intended to increase your understanding of the use of accommodations in both instruction and assessment. Accommodation use is an important part of planning the educational program for your child, and many students with a disability only need slight changes to the way they are taught and tested to participate successfully in their general education classes.

Understanding Accommodations

Accommodations are tools and procedures that provide equal access to instruction and assessment for students with disabilities. Access is the opportunity and ability for an

individual to participate in the instruction, discussions, activities, products, and assessment provided to all students within a public school. They are provided to “level the playing field.” Without accommodations, students with disabilities may not be able to access grade-level instruction or participate fully on assessments.

Accommodations are intended to offset the effects of the disability and to provide students with the opportunity
to demonstrate knowledge and skills. Accommodations
are intended to reduce or even eliminate the effects of a student’s disability and do not reduce learning expectations

and should not give a false picture of what a student knows and can do. Reliance on test accommodations should never replace appropriate and rigorous instruction in the content area
being tested.

Ideally, accommodations should be the same or similar across classroom instruction, classroom tests, and state or district tests. However, it is important to
note that
some accommodations are only for instruction and cannot be used on state or

district assessments. Effective decision-making on
the provision of appropriate accommodations begins with gathering and reviewing information about the student’s present level of academic achievement, functional performance in relation to the curriculum, and the supports the student requires during instruction and classroom assessment.

1


Accommodations are intended to reduce or even eliminate the effects of a student’s disability and do not reduce learning expect


The process of selecting accommodations is one in which members of the IEP/504 team attempt to “level the playing field” for a student with a disability, so he or she can participate in the general education curriculum.

• Team meetings could include discussions about providing the student equal learning opportunities and identifying practices and approaches intended to help the student overcome learning obstacles during instruction and assessment.

  • Informed decision making regarding accommodations is critical to ensure that successful and meaningful participation of students with disabilities in instruction and the assessment process.

  • Decisions about the provision of appropriate accommodations begin with making good instructional decisions.

  • Making appropriate instructional decisions is facilitated by gathering
    and reviewing good information about the student’s disability and present level of performance in relation to the academic content standards.

    Accommodations are generally grouped into the following categories:


Presentation

These accommodations allow students to access information in ways that do not require them to read standard print. These alternative modes of access are auditory, multi-sensory, tactile, and visual.

(ex. repeating directions, read aloud, use of large bubbles on answer sheet)

Response

These accommodations allow students to complete activities, assignments, and tests in different ways and to solve or organize problems using some type of assistive device or organizer.

(ex. marking answers in booklet, use of reference aids, use of computer)

Timing/Schedule

These accommodations increase the allowable length of time to complete a test or assignment and may also change the way the time is organized.

(ex. extended time, frequent breaks)

Setting

These accommodations change the location in which a test or assignment is given or the conditions of the assessment setting.

(ex. special study carrel, special lighting, separate room)

Accommodations vs. Modifications

Accommodations are not the same as modifications. Accommodations are intended to lessen the effects on a student’s disability; they are not intended to reduce

learning expectations. Changing, lowering or reducing learning expectations is usually referred to as a

modification or alteration. Unlike accommodations, consistent use of modifications can increase the gap between the achievement of students with disabilities

and the grade-level expectations. This may have a

negative impact on the student’s educational career as the student may not continue to progress and be able


to obtain a regular diploma.

2

State Assessment Accommodations

Federal and state laws require students who attend public schools, including students with disabilities, to participate in annual testing in specific

academic areas and grades outlined in the law. Requiring the inclusion of all students with disabilities in state and district

assessments helps ensure that schools, school districts, and states are held accountable for the achievement of these students. These laws also require students with disabilities

(those individuals covered under an Individual Education Plan (IEP) or Section 504) to be provided with appropriate accommodations necessary to participate in these tests.

Standard accommodations are those that do not change the skill that is being tested. For example, the use of a calculator

on items designed to measure math problem solving does not change the intended construct. A non-standard accommodation

is one that will change the nature of the task or target skill. For example, using a calculator on items designed to measure math fluency

is a non-standard accommodation and would not be permitted for state or district testing because it would not result in a true measure of the student’s math ability. The use of accommodations that invalidate the intended construct does not give an accurate

measure of the student’s skills and could result in an invalidation of test scores, which would count the student as non-proficient. All IEP/504 team members need to be familiar with state policies and guidelines regarding the use of accommodations on state assessments. Making sound decisions about testing accommodations requires all team members to know:

  • The test (content, types of test questions and testing conditions)

  • The state’s testing guidelines

  • The state’s accommodation guidelines

    Who Decides?

    All students with disabilities (those with an active IEP or 504 Plan) are entitled to the appropriate accommodations that allow them to fully participate in state and district testing. The student’s IEP/504 team selects the accommodations for both instruction
    and assessments.
    Accommodations should be chosen on the basis of the individual student’s needs, not on the basis of disability category, grade level, or instructional setting. Once selected, accommodations should be used consistently for instruction

    and assessment. Each teacher and other staff responsible for the implementation of the accommodations must be informed of the specific accommodations that must be provided.


3

Selecting Accommodations

The Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program (TCAP) offers multiple layers of support for participating students. The figure below portrays several aspects of the assessment features including allowable testing procedures, accessibility features that are available to
all students, and accommodations available as needed per the IEP or 504 plan. Allowable testing procedures and accessibility features are available to all students, including those
receiving accessibility features identified in advance and those receiving accommodations. Accessibility features identified in advance are available only to students for whom an adult or team has indicated the need for the feature based on demonstrated and documented classroom need for these features. Accommodations are only available to those students with documentation of need through a formal plan (IEP or 504).


Determining necessary accommodations should be part of the development of each IEP or 504 Plan. These questions should be considered in the selection process:

  • What are the student's learning strengths and needs?

  • How do the student’s learning needs affect the achievement of the grade-level content standards?

  • What specialized instruction does the student need to achieve the grade- level content standards?

Allowable Test Adminstration Conditions

Accessibility Features for all Students

Features Identified in Adavance

Accommodations

Next, discuss and review the
accommodations the student has already been
using. Ask these questions:
• What accommodations is the student regularly using in the classroom and on tests? • What is the student’s perception on how well an accommodation has worked?
• Has the student been willing to use the accommodation?
• What are the perceptions of the parents, teachers, and others about how the

accommodations appear to have worked?
Have there been difficulties administering the selected accommodations?

Evaluating Accommodations

Evaluating how effective the accommodations are should be an ongoing process only by closely reviewing the impact of an accommodation can improvements happen. IEP or 504 teams should not assume that accommodation selection carries over from year to year. Each year the team should review:

• Each accommodation and the results of tests when the accommodation was used • Student’s perspective of how well each accommodation is working
Effective combinations of accommodations
• Perceptions of teachers, paraprofessionals, and other specialists about how the

accommodations appear to be working

4

Questions Teams Should Ask about

Assessment Accommodations

  1. Is the student using any accommodations during classroom instruction that will not be allowed when taking state or district assessments?
    Because of the nature of certain accommodations, they are only allowed for instruction, not testing. If a student is accustomed to using such accommodations, the IEP team needs to make certain the student understands that a particular accommodation won’t be available during testing and work to find an acceptable accommodation that can support the student during testing in a comparable manner.

  2. Are the assessment accommodations selected acceptable and allowed for the specific assessment?
    There is a tremendous variance among acceptable accommodations for specific assessments. Be sure to follow specific assessment guidance documents, which will list acceptable accommodations.

  3. Does the student show a documented need for all selected accommodations?
    Research has shown that IEP or 504 Plan teams frequently select accommodations in a bundle, such as extended time and a different setting. However, the student might only need one of these accommodations. The IEP team has a responsibility to make sure the student is neither under or over accommodated.

  4. Are all selected accommodations documented in the IEP or 504 Plan?
    The student’s active IEP or 504 Plan should contain documentation for all accommodations that have been selected, for both instruction and assessment. Once documented in the IEP or 504 Plan, accommodations

    must be provided. Implementation of accommodations is

    mandatory, not optional.

  5. Does the student understand how to use the
    selected assessment accommodations?
    Students should have ample time to learn to use the accommodations available to them during assessments. Be sure the student is willing to use the accommodation and has used the accommodation before test day.

  6. Does the school have an advance planning process to ensure
    the proper implementation of the testing accommodations chosen
    and documented in my child’s IEP or 504 Plan?
    Accommodations are only as effective as their proper implementation. Unfortunately, implementation of accommodations can become difficult on testing days, when school staffs are stretched. Advance planning for accommodations such as quiet space, readers, or accommodated forms is critical to the ethical administration of assessment accommodations.


Finally, be sure accommodations do not lead to inappropriate testing practices such as:

• Coaching students during testing
• Editing student work
• Allowing a student to answer fewer questions or reduce the number of responses required • Giving clues to test answers in any way
Changing the content by paraphrasing or offering additional information

5

Guide to Choosing Accommodations

Presentation Accommodations

Potentially Eligible Students

􏰁tudents with print disabilities, defined as di􏰂culty or inability to visually read standard print because of a physical, sensory or cognitive disability

Questions to Ask

• Can the student read and understand directions?
• Does the student need text routinely read aloud? • Has the student been
indentified as having a reading disability?

Instruction Examples

• Large Print
􏰃agnification 􏰀evices
• Human Reader
• Audio Tapes
• Digital Textbook
• Talking Materials (calculators, clocks, timers)

Assessment Examples

• Screen/Human Reader • Text to Speech
• Braille
• Visual Representations for Math

Response Accommodations

Potentially Eligible Students

􏰁tudents with physical, sensory or learning disabilities (including di􏰂culties with memory sequencing, directionality, alignment and organization)

Questions to Ask

• Can the student use a pencil or other writing instrument?
􏰀oes the student have a disability that affects their ability to spell?

􏰀oes the student have trouble tracking from one page to another and maintaining their place?

Instruction Examples

• Scribe
• Note-takers
• Tape Recorder
• Respond on test Booklet • Spelling and Grammar
􏰀evices
• Graphic Organizers

Assessment Examples

• Speech-to-Text
• Adult Transcription • Scratch Paper
• Word Prediction

Timing and Scheduling Accommodations

Potentially Eligible Students

􏰁tudents who need more time, cannot concentrate for extended periods, have health-related disabilities, fatigue easily, special diet and/or medication needs

Questions to Ask

Can the student work continuously during the entire time allocated for test administration?

• Does the student tire easily because of their impairments?
• Does the student need
shorter work periods and frequent breaks?

Instruction Examples

• Extended time
• Frequent Breaks
• Multiple Testing Sessions

Assessment Examples

• Extended time
• Frequent Breaks

Setting Accommodations

Potentially Eligible Students

􏰁tudents who are easily distracted in large group settings, concentrate best in small groups

Questions to Ask

• Is the student easily distracted by others?
􏰀oes the student have trouble staying on task?
• Does the student exhibit
behaviors that would disrupt other students?

Instruction Examples

• Change of Room or Location
• Earphones or

Headphones • Study Carrels

Assessment Examples

• Change of Room or Location
• Earphones or Headphones

• Study Carrels

6

Everyone Deserves Input


When decisions about accommodations are being made, it is very important that everyone have a chance to give input. This includes parents, the special education staff, vocational teachers, general

education staff, and any related service providers. However, don’t forget to ask your child. If your child doesn’t want to use a

particular accommodation, other options may be considered. It is important to remember that your child will continue to learn

and develop, even if it is at a slower pace. With continued instruction on the essential skills for learning such as reading and writing, the need for certain accommodations

should lessen over time. Many accommodations will be temporary. You can help your child

become less and less dependent on the accommodations and more reliant on his or her own abilities.

Collaboration is a must when providing accommodations for

your child. Responsibility for your child’s educational program rests with many people. You have
the support of a team. As a parent, you will want to
be an active participant on that team. Collaboration
may be used for general problem solving, identifying
needed resources, and monitoring the effectiveness of
the instructional program and accommodation use. When
your child is experiencing problems, don’t be afraid to ask for assistance and always remember to include your child in the conversation.

Our goals are the same: we want all our students to develop real-
world skills, including critical thinking, writing, and problem solving. And, we want to move forward with each of you as partners in this work- so ultimately our schools can foster positive learning environments that focus on whole child development. Each of our children deserves to be ready for the next step in their educational journey, and TNReady is one way we make sure they are prepared for the better opportunities that lie ahead.


For more information, visit

TNReady.gov

The process of selecting accommodations is one in which members of the IEP/504 team attempt to “level the playing field” for a student with a disability, so he or she can participate in the general education curriculum.

• Team meetings could include discussions about providing the student equal learning opportunities and identifying practices and approaches intended to help the student overcome learning obstacles during instruction and assessment.

  • Informed decision making regarding accommodations is critical to ensure that successful and meaningful participation of students with disabilities in instruction and the assessment process.

  • Decisions about the provision of appropriate accommodations begin with making good instructional decisions.

  • Making appropriate instructional decisions is facilitated by gathering
    and reviewing good information about the student’s disability and present level of performance in relation to the academic content standards.

    Accommodations are generally grouped into the following categories:


Presentation

These accommodations allow students to access information in ways that do not require them to read standard print. These alternative modes of access are auditory, multi-sensory, tactile, and visual.

(ex. repeating directions, read aloud, use of large bubbles on answer sheet)

Response

These accommodations allow students to complete activities, assignments, and tests in different ways and to solve or organize problems using some type of assistive device or organizer.

(ex. marking answers in booklet, use of reference aids, use of computer)

Timing/Schedule

These accommodations increase the allowable length of time to complete a test or assignment and may also change the way the time is organized.

(ex. extended time, frequent breaks)

Setting

These accommodations change the location in which a test or assignment is given or the conditions of the assessment setting.

(ex. special study carrel, special lighting, separate room)

Accommodations vs. Modifications

Accommodations are not the same as modifications. Accommodations are intended to lessen the effects on a student’s disability; they are not intended to reduce

learning expectations. Changing, lowering or reducing learning expectations is usually referred to as a

modification or alteration. Unlike accommodations, consistent use of modifications can increase the gap between the achievement of students with disabilities

and the grade-level expectations. This may have a

negative impact on the student’s educational career as the student may not continue to progress and be able


to obtain a regular diploma.

2

State Assessment Accommodations

Federal and state laws require students who attend public schools, including students with disabilities, to participate in annual testing in specific

academic areas and grades outlined in the law. Requiring the inclusion of all students with disabilities in state and district

assessments helps ensure that schools, school districts, and states are held accountable for the achievement of these students. These laws also require students with disabilities

(those individuals covered under an Individual Education Plan (IEP) or Section 504) to be provided with appropriate accommodations necessary to participate in these tests.

Standard accommodations are those that do not change the skill that is being tested. For example, the use of a calculator

on items designed to measure math problem solving does not change the intended construct. A non-standard accommodation

is one that will change the nature of the task or target skill. For example, using a calculator on items designed to measure math fluency

is a non-standard accommodation and would not be permitted for state or district testing because it would not result in a true measure of the student’s math ability. The use of accommodations that invalidate the intended construct does not give an accurate

measure of the student’s skills and could result in an invalidation of test scores, which would count the student as non-proficient. All IEP/504 team members need to be familiar with state policies and guidelines regarding the use of accommodations on state assessments. Making sound decisions about testing accommodations requires all team members to know:

  • The test (content, types of test questions and testing conditions)

  • The state’s testing guidelines

  • The state’s accommodation guidelines

    Who Decides?

    All students with disabilities (those with an active IEP or 504 Plan) are entitled to the appropriate accommodations that allow them to fully participate in state and district testing. The student’s IEP/504 team selects the accommodations for both instruction
    and assessments.
    Accommodations should be chosen on the basis of the individual student’s needs, not on the basis of disability category, grade level, or instructional setting. Once selected, accommodations should be used consistently for instruction

    and assessment. Each teacher and other staff responsible for the implementation of the accommodations must be informed of the specific accommodations that must be provided.


3

Selecting Accommodations

The Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program (TCAP) offers multiple layers of support for participating students. The figure below portrays several aspects of the assessment features including allowable testing procedures, accessibility features that are available to
all students, and accommodations available as needed per the IEP or 504 plan. Allowable testing procedures and accessibility features are available to all students, including those
receiving accessibility features identified in advance and those receiving accommodations. Accessibility features identified in advance are available only to students for whom an adult or team has indicated the need for the feature based on demonstrated and documented classroom need for these features. Accommodations are only available to those students with documentation of need through a formal plan (IEP or 504).


Determining necessary accommodations should be part of the development of each IEP or 504 Plan. These questions should be considered in the selection process:

  • What are the student's learning strengths and needs?

  • How do the student’s learning needs affect the achievement of the grade-level content standards?

  • What specialized instruction does the student need to achieve the grade- level content standards?

Allowable Test Administration Conditions

Accessibility Features for all Students

Accessibility Features Identified in Adavance

Accommodations

Next, discuss and review the
accommodations the student has already been
using. Ask these questions:
• What accommodations is the student regularly using in the classroom and on tests? • What is the student’s perception on how well an accommodation has worked?
• Has the student been willing to use the accommodation?
• What are the perceptions of the parents, teachers, and others about how the

accommodations appear to have worked?
Have there been difficulties administering the selected accommodations?

Evaluating Accommodations

Evaluating how effective the accommodations are should be an ongoing process only by closely reviewing the impact of an accommodation can improvements happen. IEP or 504 teams should not assume that accommodation selection carries over from year to year. Each year the team should review:

• Each accommodation and the results of tests when the accommodation was used • Student’s perspective of how well each accommodation is working
Effective combinations of accommodations
• Perceptions of teachers, paraprofessionals, and other specialists about how the

accommodations appear to be working

4

Questions Teams Should Ask about

Assessment Accommodations

  1. Is the student using any accommodations during classroom instruction that will not be allowed when taking state or district assessments?
    Because of the nature of certain accommodations, they are only allowed for instruction, not testing. If a student is accustomed to using such accommodations, the IEP team needs to make certain the student understands that a particular accommodation won’t be available during testing and work to find an acceptable accommodation that can support the student during testing in a comparable manner.

  2. Are the assessment accommodations selected acceptable and allowed for the specific assessment?
    There is a tremendous variance among acceptable accommodations for specific assessments. Be sure to follow specific assessment guidance documents, which will list acceptable accommodations.

  3. Does the student show a documented need for all selected accommodations?
    Research has shown that IEP or 504 Plan teams frequently select accommodations in a bundle, such as extended time and a different setting. However, the student might only need one of these accommodations. The IEP team has a responsibility to make sure the student is neither under or over accommodated.

  4. Are all selected accommodations documented in the IEP or 504 Plan?
    The student’s active IEP or 504 Plan should contain documentation for all accommodations that have been selected, for both instruction and assessment. Once documented in the IEP or 504 Plan, accommodations

    must be provided. Implementation of accommodations is

    mandatory, not optional.

  5. Does the student understand how to use the
    selected assessment accommodations?
    Students should have ample time to learn to use the accommodations available to them during assessments. Be sure the student is willing to use the accommodation and has used the accommodation before test day.

  6. Does the school have an advance planning process to ensure
    the proper implementation of the testing accommodations chosen
    and documented in my child’s IEP or 504 Plan?
    Accommodations are only as effective as their proper implementation. Unfortunately, implementation of accommodations can become difficult on testing days, when school staffs are stretched. Advance planning for accommodations such as quiet space, readers, or accommodated forms is critical to the ethical administration of assessment accommodations.


Finally, be sure accommodations do not lead to inappropriate testing practices such as:

• Coaching students during testing
• Editing student work
• Allowing a student to answer fewer questions or reduce the number of responses required • Giving clues to test answers in any way
Changing the content by paraphrasing or offering additional information

5

Guide to Choosing Accommodations

Presentation Accommodations

Potentially Eligible Students

Students with print disabilities, defined as difficulty or inability to visually read standard print because of a physical, sensory or cognitive disability

Questions to Ask

• Can the student read and understand directions?
• Does the student need text routinely read aloud? • Has the student been
indentified as having a reading disability?

Instruction Examples

• Large Print
Magnification Devices
• Human Reader
• Audio Tapes
• Digital Textbook
• Talking Materials (calculators, clocks, timers)

Assessment Examples

• Screen/Human Reader • Text to Speech
• Braille
• Visual Representations for Math

Response Accommodations

Potentially Eligible Students

Students with physical, sensory or learning disabilities (including difficulties with memory sequencing, directionality, alignment and organization)

Questions to Ask

• Can the student use a pencil or other writing instrument?
Does the student have a disability that affects their ability to spell?

Does the student have trouble tracking from one page to another and maintaining their place?

Instruction Examples

• Scribe
• Note-takers
• Tape Recorder
• Respond on test Booklet • Spelling and Grammar
Devices
• Graphic Organizers

Assessment Examples

• Speech-to-Text
• Adult Transcription • Scratch Paper
• Word Prediction

Timing and Scheduling Accommodations

Potentially Eligible Students

Students who need more time, cannot concentrate for extended periods, have health-related disabilities, fatigue easily, special diet and/or medication needs

Questions to Ask

Can the student work continuously during the entire time allocated for test administration?

• Does the student tire easily because of their impairments?
• Does the student need
shorter work periods and frequent breaks?

Instruction Examples

• Extended time
• Frequent Breaks
• Multiple Testing Sessions

Assessment Examples

• Extended time
• Frequent Breaks

Setting Accommodations

Potentially Eligible Students

Students who are easily distracted in large group settings, concentrate best in small groups

Questions to Ask

• Is the student easily distracted by others?
Does the student have trouble staying on task?
• Does the student exhibit
behaviors that would disrupt other students?

Instruction Examples

• Change of Room or Location
• Earphones or

Headphones • Study Carrels

Assessment Examples

• Change of Room or Location
• Earphones or Headphones

• Study Carrels

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Everyone Deserves Input


When decisions about accommodations are being made, it is very important that everyone have a chance to give input. This includes parents, the special education staff, vocational teachers, general

education staff, and any related service providers. However, don’t forget to ask your child. If your child doesn’t want to use a

particular accommodation, other options may be considered. It is important to remember that your child will continue to learn

and develop, even if it is at a slower pace. With continued instruction on the essential skills for learning such as reading and writing, the need for certain accommodations

should lessen over time. Many accommodations will be temporary. You can help your child

become less and less dependent on the accommodations and more reliant on his or her own abilities.

Collaboration is a must when providing accommodations for

your child. Responsibility for your child’s educational program rests with many people. You have
the support of a team. As a parent, you will want to
be an active participant on that team. Collaboration
may be used for general problem solving, identifying
needed resources, and monitoring the effectiveness of
the instructional program and accommodation use. When
your child is experiencing problems, don’t be afraid to ask for assistance and always remember to include your child in the conversation.

Our goals are the same: we want all our students to develop real-
world skills, including critical thinking, writing, and problem solving. And, we want to move forward with each of you as partners in this work- so ultimately our schools can foster positive learning environments that focus on whole child development. Each of our children deserves to be ready for the next step in their educational journey, and TNReady is one way we make sure they are prepared for the better opportunities that lie ahead.


For more information, visit

TNReady.gov

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Parent Guide to Being TNReady

Preparing for the 2016-17 School Year

How will this guidebook help me prepare my family for the school year?

In the pages that follow, you will find details about when your student will take TNReady, how long they will spend testing, what type of questions will be on the test, and more. Our goal is to help you prepare your student to learn and succeed everyday . If you have additional questions after reading this guide, please talk with your student’s teacher or visit TNReady.gov.

WHY DO WE HAVE STATE TESTS?

In every Tennessee classroom, teaching and learning looks different based on the textbooks, curricula, and lessons that school and teacher have chosen. State leaders have a responsibility to make sure these varied learning opportunities are preparing all students for college, career, and life.

Our state tests serve multiple objectives:

• Provide feedback about students’ academic progress and how it aligns with grade-level expectations

  • Give parents and teachers a big-picture perspective about how a student is progressing compared to peers across the district and state, including a student’s strengths and growth opportunities

  • Build confidence and transparency about students’ readiness for postsecondary and the workforce among Tennessee colleges, universities, and employers

  • Help educators strengthen instruction and reflect on their practice

  • Hold us accountable to serving all students fairly

  • Highlight schools where students are excelling, so we

    can learn from those who are doing well

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TABLE OF CONTENTS


Letter from the Commissioner Frequently Asked Questions

What is TNReady?

How much time will my child spend testing?

What types of questions will be on TNReady?

What practice tools are available to help my student prepare?

Will my student take TNReady online?

How can I help my high school student get ready to possibly take the test online?

When will my student take TNReady?

What testing supports will be available to help my student understand and access the material on the test?


When will I know how my student scored on TNReady?
How will TNReady scores compare to my student’s previous test scores? How are TNReady scores determined?
How will new standards impact TNReady?

Five Things to Know about TNReady Parent Checklist

Glossary of Key Terms Resources

Letter from the Commissioner

Dear parents,
In my conversations with more than 10,000 teachers, students, and

parents since I took office in 2015, testing has been the issue about which I’ve received the most feedback—and understandably so. As a mom, an

educator, and a policy maker, I understand both the benefits of assessment along with the need to ensure our focus remains on

strong teaching and learning in the classroom. It is through all of those perspectives that I am working to improve how we approach

assessment in Tennessee.

At the state level, we look to see how students, schools, and districts are performing through the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment

Program (TCAP), which includes TNReady assessments for math, English language arts, social studies, and science. As Tennessee’s

teachers work to equip all students with the knowledge and skills they need, we have to ensure that we can identify any major gaps in students’ learning and find variations in growth among different schools—both so we

can strengthen support in places that need it and learn from those who are ex- celling. TNReady provides teachers and parents a unique feedback loop and big-picture perspective to better understand how students are progressing and how they can support their academic development, but it is important to remember that results from annual as- sessments are just one snapshot. They should never dominate the conversation.

We learned a lot from our experience with TNReady in the 2015-16 school year. As commissioner, I have committed to both creating better tests—so the results are helpful—while also looking for opportunities to improve test structure, time, delivery, and scheduling. We are taking immediate action on this work, as you will see in this guide. Overall, our state test is about 30 percent

shorter than it was in 2015-16, which is about three-and-a-half hours less for the average third grader. We are also phasing into online assessments, so this year, students in grades 3-8 will take TNReady on paper, with districts having the option to test their high schoolers online if they and our test vendor demonstrate readiness. Finally, we are working on making results more
actionable for parents and teachers, including taking steps over the next couple of years to provide better information faster than before.

Our goals are the same: we want all our students to develop real-world skills, including critical thinking, writing, and problem solving. We want to minimize the burden of testing in our schools. We want to provide parents, teachers, and students with helpful information. And, we want to move forward with each of you as partners in this work- so ultimately our schools can foster positive learning environments that focus on whole child development. Each of our children deserves to be ready for the next step in their educational journey, and TNReady is one way we make sure they are prepared for the better opportunities that lie ahead.


Thank you for all that you do every day for our students,

Dr. Candice McQueen Commissioner of Education

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is TNReady?

The Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program (TCAP) has been the state’s

testing program since 1988, and it includes TNReady, the state’s

assessments in math, English language arts, social studies, and

science. As the state has transitioned to higher academic standards over the past
several years, and will continue to

do so, our tests have become better aligned to what educators

are teaching in their classrooms every day.

TNReady is designed to assess true student understanding, not just basic memorization and

test-taking skills. TNReady measures students’ understanding of our current state standards in English

language arts, math, social studies, and science, but it is more than just a state test. It is a way to assess what our students know

and what we can do to help them succeed in the future. Just as we take our children to the doctor for their annual check-ups, TNReady offers parents, students, and teachers with an academic check-up each year to ensure all students are moving forward, on track to be successful in the next step of their academic journey.


Why TNReady?

Develops skills that are in line with college and work expectations

Allows students to show what they know in new ways

Provides better information for teachers and l-world problem solving

2

What tests are included underneath the TCAP testing umbrella?

TCAPTNReady

Students in grades High school students 3-8 take these exams take the following End

of Course (EOC) exams:
• English I

• English II
• English III
• Algebra I or Integrated Math I • Geometry or Integrated Math II • Algebra II or Integrated Math III
• U.S. History & Geography
• Chemistry
• Biology

Assessments for Students with Disabilities

Students in grades 3-11 with the most significant cognitive disabilities are eligible for alternative assessments in all four content areas (ELA, math, science, and social studies)

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each year:

• English Language Arts • Mathematics
• Social Studies
• Science

• For grades 3–8 , students take the Multi-State Alternate Assessment (MSAA) in English language arts and mathematics • For grades 3–8, students take the TCAP Alternate for Social Studies
• For second grade students in a district taking the optional second grade assessment, students take the Alternate Assessment for Second Grade in math and ELA

• For grade 11, students take the Multi-State Alternate Assessment (MSAA) in English language arts and mathematics
• For science in grade 10, students take the TCAP Alternate for Science.

*English learners are required to participate state assessments. The only exception is for a student who is in his or her first year in a U.S. school. Also, testing accommodations are available for ELs who are in direct service, waived services, or considered transition during the four years following exit from the ESL program.



4

How much time will my child spend testing?

Generally, students will spend about 30% less time on state tests than in 2015-16. In grades 3-8, TNReady has been shortened by 200-210 minutes, depending on the grade. Most End of Course assessments have been reduced by 40-120 minutes; the only End of Course tests that are unchanged are biology and chemistry, which are already the shortest test. The chart on the following page shows how much time students will spend taking their state assessment this year and how much time has been reduced from the 2015-16 test.

While districts and schools may add additional tests onto what is required by the state, the total amount of time a student spends on state tests is less than 1% of the school year.

2016-17 TESTING TIME CHART

End of Course Exam (EOC)

English I/II/III

Subpart 1: 85 minutes (writing) Subpart 2: 50 minutes Subpart 3: 50 minutes Subpart 4: 45 minutes Total: 230 minutes

120 minute reduction

Integrated Math I/II/III

Subpart 1: 35 minutes (no calculator) Subpart 2: 55 minutes (calculator) Subpart 3: 55 minutes (calculator) Total: 145 minutes

65 minute reduction

Algebra I/II

Subpart 1: 35 minutes (no calculator) Subpart 2: 55 minutes (calculator) Subpart 3: 55 minutes (calculator) Total: 145 minutes

65 minute reduction

Geometry

Subpart 1: 35 minutes (no calculator) Subpart 2: 55 minutes (calculator) Subpart 3: 55 minutes (calculator) Total: 145 minutes

65 minute reduction

Biology I

Subpart 1: 75 minutes Total: 75 minutes

no change

Chemistry I

Subpart 1: 75 minutes Total: 75 minutes

no change

U.S. History & Geography

Subpart 1: 50 minutes (writing) Subpart 2: 45 minutes Subpart 3: 45 minutes Total: 140 minutes

40 minute reduction

5

Grade 5

Grade 6

Grade 7

Grade 8

ELA

*OPTIONAL; DISTRICT CHOICE* Subpart 1: 40 minutes Subpart 2: 40 minutes Subpart 3: 42 minutes Subpart 4: 40 minutes Total: 195 minutes

Subpart 1: 75 minutes (writing) Subpart 2: 35 minutes Subpart 3: 35 minutes Subpart 4: 50 minutes Total: 195 minutes

95 minute reduction

Subpart 1: 75 minutes (writing) Subpart 2: 50 minutes Subpart 3: 50 minutes Subpart 4: 45 minutes Total: 230 minutes

90 minute reduction

Subpart 1: 75 minutes (writing) Subpart 2: 50 minutes Subpart 3: 50 minutes Subpart 4: 45 minutes Total: 230 minutes

90 minute reduction

Subpart 1: 75 minutes (writing) Subpart 2: 50 minutes Subpart 3: 50 minutes Subpart 4: 45 minutes Total: 230 minutes

90 minute reduction

2016-17 TESTING TIME CHART

Mathematics

Subpart 1: 45 minutes (no calc) Subpart 2: 30 minutes (calculator) Subpart 3: 40 minutes (calculator) Total: 115 minutes

20 minute reduction

Subpart 1: 40 minutes (no calc) Subpart 2: 30 minutes (calculator) Subpart 3: 55 minutes (calculator) Total: 125 minutes

25 minute reduction

Subpart 1: 40 minutes (no calc) Subpart 2: 30 minutes (calculator) Subpart 3: 55 minutes (calculator) Total: 125 minutes

25 minute reduction

Subpart 1: 40 minutes (no calc) Subpart 2: 30 minutes (calculator) Subpart 3: 55 minutes (calculator) Total: 125 minutes

25 minute reduction

Science

Subpart 1: 48 minutes Subpart 2: 47 minutes Total: 95 minutes no change

Subpart 1: 48 minutes Subpart 2: 47 minutes Total: 95 minutes no change

Subpart 1: 48 minutes Subpart 2: 47 minutes Total: 95 minutes no change

Subpart 1: 48 minutes Subpart 2: 47 minutes Total: 95 minutes no change

Social Studies


Grade 2

Grade 3

Grade 4

Subpart 1: 75 minutes (writing) Subpart 2: 35 minutes Subpart 3: 35 minutes Subpart 4: 50 minutes Total: 195 minutes

95 minute reduction

Subpart 1: 75 minutes (writing) Subpart 2: 35 minutes Subpart 3: 35 minutes Subpart 4: 50 minutes Total: 195 minutes

95 minute reduction

*OPTIONAL; DISTRICT CHOICE* Subpart 1: 40 minutes Subpart 2: 42 minutes Total: 82 minutes

Subpart 1: 45 minutes (no calc) Subpart 2: 30 minutes (calculator) Subpart 3: 40 minutes (calculator) Total: 115 minutes

20 minute reduction

Subpart 1: 45 minutes (no calc) Subpart 2: 30 minutes (calculator) Subpart 3: 40 minutes (calculator) Total: 115 minutes

20 minute reduction

Subpart 1: 53 minutes Subpart 2: 51 minutes Total: 104 minutes no change

Subpart 1: 48 minutes Subpart 2: 47 minutes Total: 95 minutes no change

Field test: 50 minutes Total: 50 minutes

Field test: 50 minutes Total: 50 minutes

Field test: 50 minutes Total: 50 minutes

Field test: 50 minutes Total: 50 minutes

Field test: 50 minutes Total: 50 minutes

Field test: 50 minutes Total: 50 minutes

6

What types of questions will be on TNReady?

TNReady tests a deeper level of knowledge than previous tests. For example, in English language arts students will read from a passage and provide some written
responses to support their answers. In math, students will solve multi-step problems, many without using a calculator, to show what they know. TNReady gives students a variety of ways to show what they know and can do.

We know that teachers use a combination of things like
writing assignments, projects, and multiple-choice
questions to measure student learning throughout the year. In a similar way, TNReady will give students a variety of ways to show what they know. On the following pages you will see a few sample questions from TNReady in a variety of subjects and grades.
The correct answers are indicated in orange.


TNReady gives students a variety of ways to show what they know and can do.

Mathematics Sample Questions:

(Algebra II)

1. Makenna purchases a car for $27,500. The value of the car will depreciate each year. After five years, the value of the car is $14,186. What is the approximate yearly depreciation rate of the car, to the nearest tenth of a percent?


+

=

x

-


(Grade 6)

2. Evaluate 39 - (11 + 53 ÷ 5)

12.4%

3

English Language Arts Sample Questions:


7

(Grade 4)

3. The creator of Mickey Mouse was born December 5, 1901, in Chicago. His name was Walter Disney. He began drawing pictures when he were a young boy, His first drawing was of his neighbor’s horse, Rupert. Replace were with:

A. were

B. was

C. am D. is

English Language Arts Sample Questions (continued):

4. Select the two sentences from the passage that best represent the idea of the New Year as “a time for fresh beginnings.”

A. “This image ... was important to cross through the ‘right way’ to produce favorable outcomes.”
B. “A resolution is simply an agreement with yourself to change something about your life for the better.”

C. “A new year is like a clean sheet of paper to draw blueprints for a fresh vision.”
D. “However, you should not wear black, as that will bring you sorrow in the New Year.”

E. “There is also an old story that exactly at midnight animals are able to speak for one minute....”

Social Studies Sample Questions:


(Grade 3)

5. How does a person know that the hurricane is in the Atlantic Ocean?

A. It is west of South America

B. It is east of North America

C. It is north of Australia D. It is south of Africa

(U.S. History & Geography)

6. Which person would most likely have been a “new” immigrant during the late 19th and early 20th centuries?

A. A farmer from Sweden

B. A Catholic from Italy

C. A merchant from England D. A protestant from Germany

8

Science Sample Questions:

(Grade 6)

7. A student throws a toy airplane upward. The airplane travels for a short distance and then falls to the ground. What pulls the airplane to the ground?

A. air pressure
B. magnetic force C. friction
D. gravity


(Chemistry)

8. When a student performs an acid-base test on a household cleaner, red litmus paper turns blue. Based on the results, which statement is a valid conclusion?

A. It is an acid B. It is a base C. It is a neutral

D. It is a salt

What practice tools are available to help my student prepare for TNReady?

While the best preparation for TNReady will be strong instruction every day in the classroom, we know that parents and teachers need additional tools to prepare students for success. Questions on TNReady this year will be in a similar format to the questions students were preparing for last school year

and will be aligned to the standards students are learning in class every day.

Parent Access to Practice Questions

TNReady practice questions will be available to parents online in the coming months. Continue to check TNReady.gov for more information.

Practice Test

Teachers have access to a practice tests, which provides example questions for every standard that will be assessed on the test through an internal system called EdTools. Practice tests are available in all tested grades and subjects. Teachers can use the practice test in class to help your student be prepared for TNReady.

9


The best preparation for TNReady is strong instruction every day.

Will my student take TNReady online?

Tennessee will phase in online administration over multiple years to ensure both state and local technology readiness. For the upcoming school year, the state assessment for grades 3–8 will be administered via paper and pencil.

The department will work closely with Questar, our testing vendor for TNReady, to provide an online option for high school End of Course exams for math, English, and U.S. history & geography for the spring testing window if the testing platform demonstrates early proof of successful online administration in schools. However, all high schools on block schedule will administer their fall End of Course exams via paper and pencil.

Even if schools demonstrate readiness for online spring administration, districts will still have the option to choose paper and pencil assessments for their high school students this year.

Biology and chemistry exams will be administered via paper and pencil. For students with the most significant cognitive disabilities, MSAA has online and paper options, and the TCAP Alternative assessment is paper and pencil only.

How can I help my high school student get ready to possibly take the test online?

In higher education, nearly every job, and our modern society, we use the
internet to communicate and accomplish our work. It is the way of our world. We must prepare students for their future, which requires comfort with technology. With that in mind, high schools will have an option to administer their spring End of Course

exams online.

To prepare your student, encourage them to begin using digital devices every day in low-stress situations. Don’t wait until testing begins to help your student learn how to use a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer. Similar to last year, a student portal and practice test will be avail- able for practice later this fall.

We know that some Tennessee students do not have access to a computer or the internet at home. If internet access is a challenge, we

encourage you to talk with your school principal about options for allowing your student to use a computer after school hours. You could also visit a computer lab at

the public library, community center, and/or place of worship.

We must prepare students for their futures, which requires comfort with technology.

10

When will my student take TNReady?

All TNReady assessments will be administered toward the end of the year (or at the end of the semester for high school students on block schedule). All assessments will now be taken in one administration window.

TNReady will be administered between April 17 and
May 5
, and districts have scheduling flexibility to
minimize the impact of testing on school activities. The
first subpart of the English language arts assessment,
which includes the writing prompt, will be administered during the first week of the three-week window. High schools on a fall block schedule will take their assessment

between November 28 and December 16. Fall block students will take the test via paper and pencil.

The assessments for students with the most significant cognitive disabilities, MSAA (math and ELA) and TCAP Alternative (science and social studies), will take place over a two-month window in the spring.

What testing supports will be available to help my student understand and access the

material on the test?

As in the past, the full range of accommodations will be available to make the test accessible for all students to participate. IEP teams will be provided guidance on how to select appropriate

accommodations for this, which will be similar to last year.

For parents of students with disabilities, please visit TNReady.gov for a supplemental guide on

accommodations and preparing your student for TNReady.


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When will I know how my student scored on TNReady?

Results in the first year of TNReady will be delayed while Tennessee teachers and the department complete the scoring process during the summer, so we expect to have official scores for students in grades 3-8 in the fall of 2017. For End of Course exams, the department is planning for results to be available for families and schools in summer 2017. During future test administrations, the department will publish results for grades 3-8 and high school on a similar timeline.

Scores and raw data from the End of Course 2015-16 state tests will be available later this fall, as the department outlined last year. Students who took End of Course exams in English language arts, math, and U.S. history & geography will receive full, newly redesigned score reports, which will provide better information to parents and students. Results from grades 3-8 will be more limited raw data—for example, the department will be able to share how many questions a student answered correctly, but not what that score means in terms of a student’s proficiency and growth level.

How will TNReady scores compare to my child’s previous test scores?

As students and teachers rise to new expectations with the new tests, we predict
that first-year test scores for students in grades 3-8 will decline when compared to previous TCAP assessments. We expect first year results from TNReady to set a new baseline to measure rapid progress in the years to come. As a parent, you can use the information from the test to help support your child at
home and begin a discussion with your child’s teacher to
identify what, if any, additional support is necessary to
ensure they move from grade to grade with the
academic knowledge and skills necessary for success in
the next school year and beyond high school.

New parent reports will show more and better
information than ever before, and will be given to
parents once the scoring process has been completed.
For students who took End of Course exams during the
2015-16 school year, their parents and teachers will receive these new reports later this fall. Each subject will be broken down into categories of skills to show where a student is doing well or needs some extra help and how their results compare to that of their peers in their school, district, and in Tennessee. On the next page, you will see a sample of the newly designed parent reports for TNReady.

As a parent, you can use the information from the test to help support your child at home.

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What is the standards setting?

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Least Difficult Question

Most Difficult Question

Actual student performance determines where the questions fall from least difficult to most difficult; that’s why you can only do standards setting after students take the test.

Based on broad definitions of what students should know and be able to do at each level, Tennessee educators look at each question, determining the cut off between each level of proficiency. This process is called standards setting.


What is a cut score? The point where two levels meet is called the cut score. Three cut scores determine four levels of performance.

LEVEL 1

LEVEL 2

LEVEL 3

LEVEL 4

Cut Score A Cut Score B Cut Score C

What is a performance level?

Cut Score c Cut Score B

Cut Score A

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The cut score is the minimum score a student must earn to be considered at a certain performance level.

Performance level is not the same as proficiency; rather, performance levels are used to determine proficiency.

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LEVEL 4

LEVEL 3

LEVEL 2

LEVEL 1


14

How will new standards impact TNReady?

Tennessee teachers and the broader education community have been revising our state academic standards in math and English language arts over
the past couple of years. The new standards will be fully
implemented in Tennessee classrooms during the 2017-18

school year, with training that will get underway over the course of the 2016-17 year to help educators prepare for

the transition. However, the 2016-17 TNReady tests are aligned to the standards our

educators have been teaching for several years, not the new standards.

Science and social studies academic standards are also under review. On

the current schedule, the new science

standards will be in effect in 2018-19 and
social studies in 2019-20. TNReady is a Tennessee

specific test that is designed to easily adapt over time in order to measure new standards. As the state’s standards evolve, so

will TNReady.

What if I still have questions?

We know that you may still have questions about TNReady for the 2016-17 school year, and we have

prepared a detailed frequently asked questions section that can be found on TNReady.gov. If you

still feel like you have unanswered questions, you can submit a question on a form located at the bottom of the frequently asked questions page. Your question will be shared with us and someone

at the department will provide you with an email response and any additional resources that may be

helpful.


15

Fiv1e Things to Know About TNReady

Overall, students will spend about 30 percent less time taking state tests in math, social studies, English language arts, and science this year.

TNReady includes rigorous questions aligned with what 2 educators are teaching every day and measure students’

writing, critical thinking,and problem solving skills.

3 For grades 3–8, TNReady will be administered via paper and pencil and are working to provide an online option

for high school assessments.

The test will be given in one part during a three-week 4 window between April 17 and May 5.

5 The information from TNReady will provide a big-picture perspective on how students are progressing compared to

their peers across Tennessee, and better information about a student’s strengths, needs, and areas for growth.

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Parent Checklist for TNReady

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Help your child get ready to learn: ensure your child is going to school every day well rested and ready to take on new challenges.

Meet with your child’s teacher: Ask about your child’s strengths and areas to grow and how you can support them at home.

Talk to your child: Get feedback from them on which subjects your child feels most comfortable in and where they are most challenged.

Challenge your child: When your child is working on homework or studying for a classroom test, ask them to explain what they are learning and let them be the teacher.

Be an adult learner: Let your child see you discovering new things and overcoming challenges, whether it be learning new information or a new skill.

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Glossary

Cut Scores: the minimum score s tudent must earn to be considered at a certain performance level

Performance Level: used to determine proficiency

Practice Test: a bank of questions that represents each standard or academic expectation that will be assessed on the actual test

Reporting: how we share details about student performance on TCAP

Seat Time: the amount of time students spend actually taking a test

Standards: what we expect students to know and be able to do by the end of a grade or school year

Standards Setting: the process of Tennessee educators looking at each question and determining the cut off between each level of proficiency

TCAP: Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment program, which includes all of our state tests. TNReady is a part of TCAP.

Testing Window: the window of dates in which districts can choose to administer TNReady; students only spend a portion of the testing window actually taking the test

TNReady: a new, better state test with questions that mirror what students are expected to know and be able to do in order to be on track for the next step in their educational journey that includes the main state tests in math, English language arts, social studies, and science in grades 3-11


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Resources

Your student’s teacher is always the best resource for questions about TNReady.

The following websites are recommended for preparing for and staying up-to-date about TNReady:

Tennessee Department of Education’s webpage focused on TNReady information and resources:
www.tnready.gov

Tennessee Department of Education’s website section with details about academic standards for all subjects and grade levels: www.tn.gov/education/topic/academic-standards

Tennessee Department of Education’s blog site, which features teacher perspectives and inspiring stories:
www.tnclassroomchronicles.org

Tennessee Department of Education’s Twitter account:

www.twitter.com/TNedu

Tennessee Department of Education’s Facebook account:

www.facebook.com/TennesseeEducation

Remember, the best resource is always your student’s teacher.


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Department of Education August 2016; Publication Authorization No. 331718; 3000 copies. This public document was promulgated at a cost of $1.46 per copy.


 

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