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INFORMATIONAL LETTER # 119
POLICY CODE: CGD
TO: Superintendents of Schools (Please forward to Asst. Superintendents, Curriculum Coordinators, School Principals, Guidance Directors, and Special Education Directors)
FROM: Susan A. Gendron, Commissioner
RE: Grade Level Expectations Development and Assessment Plans
Key Points Covered in this Informational Letter:
In order to meet the federal guidelines contained in the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), in particular the requirement to assess yearly student performance in grades 3-8, the Maine Department of Education has developed Grade Level Expectations (GLEs) for reading and mathematics in grades 3, 5, 6, and 7 based on the existing language of Learning Results performance indicators in grades 4 and 8.
have been finalized are posted on the Department website to allow maximum time
To ensure the greatest possible degree of continuity and coordination, the Department will extend our existing contract with Measured Progress to develop the GLE assessment for grades 3, 5, 6, and 7. The following items address significant design and development issues:
§ The GLE assessment will be similar to the secure version of the Measured Progress annual “Progress Toward Standards” (PTS) assessment. To ensure the greatest degree of alignment with the Maine GLEs, and to obtain the desired balance of selected response and constructive response items, the GLE assessment will be customized to meet our unique needs.
§ The GLE assessments in reading and mathematics at grades 3, 5, 6, and 7 will retain many of the MEA design features found at grades 4 and 8. (Click on the following link to view the chart that presents the design specifications:
§ The school and student reports will resemble our current MEA reports.
§ The GLE assessment will also provide a national comparison score, which should permit districts, if they choose, to use the GLE assessment in the place of other national tests, thereby saving considerable time and money.
§ The timeline for implementation of the GLE assessment is as follows:
o Field test and pilot reading and mathematics tests in March of 2005. It is yet to be determined whether the test window will coincide with that of the MEA or whether a slight difference would permit more effective use of local administration and accommodation resources.
o Since the GLE assessment will be shorter, with fewer constructed response items, than the MEA, results should be available to local districts with four to six weeks.
o GLE assessment scores will not be factored in AYP calculations until 2006-07.
§ The Policy Advisory and Technical Advisory Committees have discussed, and will continue to do so, all technical and policy issues in the development of the GLE assessment and make recommendations to the Commissioner as warranted. The Learning Results Steering Committee, as the Committee of Practitioners for NCLB, will also discuss strategic implications of the GLE assessment and make recommendations to the Commissioner as warranted.