2009–2010 Maine Comprehensive Assessment System (MeCAS)
INFORMATIONAL LETTER NO: 24
POLICY CODE: ILB
TO: Superintendents (Please forward to: Assistant Superintendents, Curriculum Coordinators, Elementary and Middle School Principals, ESL Educators, and Special Education Directors
FROM: Susan A. Gendron
DATE: September 17, 2009
RE: 2009–2010 Maine Comprehensive Assessment System (MeCAS)
Key Points Covered in this Informational Letter:
- MeCAS consists of the following assessments:
- New England Common Assessment Program (NECAP) in reading and mathematics at grades 3-8 and in writing at grades 5 and 8
- Maine Educational Assessment (MEA) science test at grades 5 and 8
- Personalized Alternate Assessment Portfolio (PAAP) at grades 2-7 and 2nd and 3rd year high school for reading and mathematics; at grades 5, 8, and 3rd year high school for science; and at grades 4, 7 and 3rd year high school for writing
- PSAT for 10th and 11th grade high school students
- Maine High School Assessment (MHSA), consisting of the SAT and science assessment for 3rd year high school students
- WIDA ACCESS for ELLs® for all K-12 enrolled English Language Learners to determine English Language Proficiency
- Assessments measure the revised Maine Department of Education (MDOE) Regulation 131: The Maine Federal, State, and Local Accountability Standards in reading, mathematics and science
- Assessment-specific Information
- Infinite Campus State Edition Data and Training
- MeCAS Testing Dates
- Flu Outbreaks
Maine’s Comprehensive Assessment System consists of the following assessments which measure MDOE Regulation 131 for accountability purposes in reading, mathematics and science. While writing is not part of the federal accountability system, Maine chooses to assess writing at grades 5, 8, and 11.
NECAP – Grades 3-8
The NECAP test in reading and mathematics at grades 3-8 and a writing field test at grades 5 and 8 will be administered in Maine schools from October 1-22, 2009. Test administration workshops have been held around the State and recorded electronically. These presentations, along with other administration information, standards, test design, accommodations, operational procedures, special consideration forms, etc. are located at the following NECAP website: http://www.maine.gov/education/lsalt/necap/index.html . This site also contains test administration training presentations that occurred around the State this month.
NOTE: Any accommodation from the list of 2008-09 MEA or the 2009-10 NECAP Approved Accommodations list approved for a student by a team will be allowed for the October 2009 NECAP. A crosswalk of MEA to NECAP accommodation codes is available on the site above.
MEA Science - Grades 5 and 8
Science assessments will be administered at grades 5 and 8 from May 10–21, 2010. Administration information will be posted as soon as available on the Web at http://www.maine.gov/education/mea/admininfo.htm .
PAAP - Grades 2-8 and 2nd and 3rd year High School
The alternate assessment (PAAP) will be administered as follows:
- reading and mathematics for students in grades 2-7 and 2nd and 3rd year high school. This change in grades is due to Maine’s membership in NECAP, which assesses students based on the year they were taught
- science for students in grades 5, 8, and 3rd year high school
- writing for students in grades 4 and 7 and the 3rd year high school level.
The PAAP administration window will run from December 1, 2009 through April 30, 2010 and
will continue to consist only of tasks that can be chosen and downloaded from the Web at http://www.mecas.org/paap/index.html . PAAP trainings are being planned for the month of November and registration of students will occur in March, 2010. Additional information is located at: http://www.mecas.org/paap/index.html .
PSAT – 2nd and 3rd year High School Students
The PSAT is required of all 10th and 11th grade high school students and will be administered on October 14, 2010. More information can be found at: http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/psat/about.html . The PSAT assessment program is not part of Maine’s federal accountability system.
MHSA- 3rd year High School Students
The MHSA consists of the SAT (critical reading, mathematics, and writing) and science assessment for third year high school students. Due to Maine’s adoption of the NECAP assessment standards, the Mathematics Augmentation (Math-A) administered in previous years is no longer applicable and has been eliminated from the MHSA. The dates of the MHSA science test administration window are March 29 – April 9, 2010. The SAT testing date is May 1, 2010. More information can be found at: http://www.maine.gov/education/mhsa/index.htm.
WIDA ACCESS for ELLs® for all K-12 Enrolled English Language Learners
All K-12 English language learners (ELLs) in Maine, including recently arrived ELLs, must be assessed for English language proficiency by participating in the WIDA ACCESS for ELLs® during the testing window of December 1, 2009 to February 5, 2010. Those students who arrive after the testing window has closed must be assessed with another English language proficiency assessment in order to count as participating in the NECAP reading test. A recently arrived ELL is an ELL who has arrived in the United States for the first time on or after September 1, 2008.
WIDA student labels are automatically ordered by MDOE for all English Language Learners based on the LEP data contained in the Infinite Campus State Edition (ICSE) on October 15, 2009. To ensure accurate student labels, schools must update and verify the ICSE enrollment data contained in the ACCESS for ELLs® Label Roster Report before October 15th by following the procedure outlined in the Infinite Campus State Edition paragraph below.
WIDA tests are ordered by districts between October 5 and October 23, 2009 in accordance with information emailed directly from MetriTech. Test ordering information is also available by contacting MetriTech at email@example.com or by calling 1-800-747-4868. Training for test administrators is available online at: www.wida.us . Questions about online training should be directed to: firstname.lastname@example.org .
Infinite Campus State Edition Data
The official student data of record for all state assessments, except for accommodations, is supplied directly by local school units to the Infinite Campus State Edition (ICSE) system. It is essential that schools keep their ICSE data current. To ensure additional accurate student labels for use on the NECAP answer booklets, schools must update and verify student enrollment by October 1, 2009 by reviewing the “Attending Student Download”, and “NECAP Label Roster” reports in ICSE. These can be found under “ME State Reporting” of the Index tab in ICSE. Please make sure the year selected at the top is 09-10. After selecting a report, click “Generate Report” to view the spreadsheet. Clicking “Generate Report” will offer the option to “Open” or “Save” the resulting spreadsheet, which will show enrolled and exited students. Other reports available include: “ACCESS for ELLs ®”and “Maine High School Assessment Students”.
Individual student coding corrections for assessment or AYP reports will not be accepted or made by MDOE after published deadlines. Requests for other data adjustments will be handled on a case-by-case basis and will be granted only in exceptional circumstances.
Training is available on data standards and the use of the verification reports. For registration information, visit http://moodle.slds.me , and click “Using Verification Reports”. Currently, a session related to NECAP has been scheduled for September 25, and additional sessions will be added as we near other assessment windows.
More information regarding deadlines for updating ICSE student data for assessment/AYP reporting purposes will be distributed through MEDMS updates. Reporting deadlines can also be found on the Abbreviated Student & Staff Calendar at: http://www.maine.gov/education/medms/datacalendar09-10.pdf
MeCAS Testing Dates
Please refer to: http://www.maine.gov/education/lsalt/0910assessment_testdates.pdf for the complete list of assessment-related dates organized by month.
State assessment schedules are always susceptible to unforeseen or unpredictable events which can alter administration timelines. This year, the potential of H1N1 flu outbreaks must be considered as one such possible event. The Maine Department of Education is recommending that all schools locally schedule the administration of the State-required tests within the published administration window, providing make-up opportunities as would normally take place. If extenuating circumstances result in these normal administration processes being insufficient, affected schools should contact the appropriate MDOE staff below for alternatives. The MDOE will be closely following the federal guidance on this issue which can found at the following site: http://www.ed.gov/admins/lead/safety/emergencyplan/pandemic/index.html .
For More Information: Please periodically check the websites included in this letter for updated information. You may also register for the following Listservs:
MEA/NECAP-related information: http://mailman.informe.org/mailman/listinfo/mea
PAAP-related information: http://mailman.informe.org/mailman/listinfo/paap
MEA/NECAP Policy: Susan Smith, MEA/NECAP Coordinator, at (207) 624-6775/6770, or email@example.com
NECAP Administration: Measured Progress at 1-877-632-7774
PSAT/MHSA Policy: Dan Hupp, State Director of Assessment at (207) 624-6774 or firstname.lastname@example.org
PAAP and Accommodations Policies: Susan Fossett at (207) 624-6774 or email@example.com
AYP Policy: Rachelle Tome, Title 1 Director, at (207) 624-6705 or firstname.lastname@example.org
WIDA ACCESS for ELLs® Policy: Nancy Mullins, ESL/Bilingual Director at (207) 624-6788, or email@example.com
ACCESS for ELLs® Administration and Ordering: MetriTech at 1-800-747-4868
ICSE: MEDMS Helpdesk at (207) 624-6896 or firstname.lastname@example.org