Considerations for the Alternate Assessment based on Modified Achievement Standards
In April 2007, the U.S. Department of Education (USED) released new regulations for the No Child Left Behind Act that allowed for the use of an alternate assessment based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS). States could use this new assessment for students with disabilities to count up to two percent of students as “proficient” for purposes of Adequate Yearly Progress. These regulations were in response to state concerns that there were students with disabilities who were not able to show proficiency on the general assessment, and yet would not be assessed appropriately by the alternate assessment based on alternate achievement standards.
In Fall 2008, the New York Comprehensive Center received supplemental funding from the USED to collaborate with the New York State Education Department and the Center for Assessment to convene a panel of experts on AA-MAS policy issues. In June 2009, this group submitted a report to the USED detailing strategies and policy recommendations for identifying an eligible student population, designing and developing modified standards and assessments, and incorporating these standards and assessments into an existing accountability system. Representatives from the New York Comprehensive Center and its collaborators gave a briefing in August 2009 to members of the USED on the report’s findings and implications. The report provides recommendations and valuable insights for state policymakers and other stakeholders invested in providing appropriate instruction and support to students with disabilities.
For convenience, this 378 page report may also be downloaded in smaller sections, as provided below:
Download Part 1: Table of Contents and Chapter 1, Introduction
Download Part 2: Section I (Chapters 2–4)
Download Part 3: Section II (Chapter 5–7)
Download Part 4: Section III (Chapter 8–10)
Download Part 5: Appendices