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Assessments should be administered regularly and frequently for the purpose of monitoring the progress of individual students with disabilities and for adapting instruction to improve performance.
States and districts should develop clear guidelines for accommodations that permit students with disabilities to participate in assessments administered for accountability purposes.
States and districts should collect evidence to demonstrate that the assessment, with accommodations, can measure the knowledge or skill of particular students or groups of students.
States and districts should describe the methods they use to screen students for accommodations, and they should report the frequency of these practices.
Federal research units, foundations, and other funding agencies should promote research that advances knowledge about the validity and reliability of different accommodations and alternate assessment practices.
Questions to Ask
Are clear guidelines in place for accommodations that permit students with disabilities to participate in assessments administered for accountability purposes?
Is there evidence that the assessment, with accommodations, can measure the knowledge or skill of particular students or groups of students?
Are the methods used to screen students to determine whether they need accommodations for tests reported, including the frequency of such practices?
Assessments for students with disabilities should follow the same criteria used for assessments generally, which were described above. In addition, such assessments should also meet additional criteria based on the unique problems associated with testing children with disabilities. The committee recommends that, in developing an assessment system for students with disabilities, states and districts adhere to the following criteria: