« Proposal to Restore Bilingual Education in California Advances | Main | Language, Literacy Seen as Barriers to Early Education for Immigrants »

Common-Core Test Experts Explain ELL and Special Education Supports

The two experts closest to the development of features designed to make the new common-core assessments accessible to all students, including English-language learners, appeared on edweek.org yesterday to answer questions from the field.

Magda Chia, the director of system design and support for underrepresented students for Smarter Balanced; and Tamara Reavis, a senior adviser for assessment, accessibility, and equity at PARCC; spent an hour taking questions and explaining the range of supports and features for students with disabilities and English-language learners. The full chat transcript is on edweek.org.

The largest share of questions focused on accommodations for students with disabilities, but there are good nuggets of information in there for educators and parents who are more interested in what each testing consortia is offering for English-learners.

There are some pretty significant differences between what Smarter Balanced and PARCC are offering for English-learners. Smarter Balanced, for example, has embedded digital word glossaries  in its math tests in 10 languages. PARCC does not offer embedded digital glossaries on its math tests, but does allow students to use paper glossaries that will have to be provided by local districts.

Both Chia and Reavis said that the testing groups would soon be analyzing data from the spring field tests to see how English-learners experienced the new exams, as well as the language supports.

Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on edweek.org, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Follow This Blog


Most Viewed on Education Week



Recent Comments

  • Charles: ELLs in our state ARE required to take State standardized read more
  • Melissa: Maybe I'm just becoming jaded, but this feels to me read more
  • Anonymous: Are you kidding me....UNO is an organizaion that literally destroys read more
  • Meg Baker: Are any schools using ACCESS scores for purposes other than read more
  • Dr. Mendoza: This is great news i must say. Hopefully this DREAM read more