APA Fall 2009 Training Schedule

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APA Fall 2009 Training Schedule Powered By Docstoc
					                                              August 21, 2009


TO:              District Test Coordinators

FROM:            Timothy Peters, Director
                 Office of State Assessments

SUBJECT:         Administrator and Teacher Training Schedule and Plans for the 2009-2010
                 Alternate Proficiency Assessment (APA)

         The information contained in this memo is meant to assist you in identifying who is required to
participate in the upcoming fall Alternate Proficiency Assessment (APA) training and to remind you of the
participation criteria that Individualized Education Program (IEP) teams must use to determine how a
student will participate in the statewide assessment system. There are several attachments that should
be used when registering for the fall training sessions.

         In order to identify the administrators and educators who need to participate in the
upcoming APA training, you must first determine which students with the most significant
cognitive disabilities will participate in the APA. According to the New Jersey Administrative Code
[N.J.A.C. 6A:14-4.10], each student must participate in the New Jersey Assessment of Skills and
Knowledge in grades 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 (NJ ASK3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8), or the High School Proficiency
Assessment (HSPA) at the appropriate grade levels unless the IEP team has determined that the student
has not been instructed in any of the knowledge and skills measured by the assessment and could not
complete any of the types of tasks on the assessment [N.J.A.C. 6A:14-4.10(a)2]. The IEP team makes
this determination for each content area tested. Additional guidance for determining who should
participate in the APA is provided in Appendix A.

          For students who are unable to participate in the NJ ASK, HSPA, or End of Course (EOC)
assessments due to the severity of their disability, each IEP must indicate that the student will
participate in the APA. This is in accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
amendments of 2004, which require that all students with disabilities, even those with the most significant
disabilities, participate in state and district wide assessments.

         In addition, if a student is new to the state this year as a senior and has not participated in either
the HSPA or the APA, the IEP team must determine which assessment is appropriate and the student
must participate in either assessment as a senior. Students who were juniors last year, and should have
participated in the APA according to their IEPs but did not due to prolonged absence during the
assessment time frame, must also participate in the APA this year. A student who is in an interim
alternative placement is not considered “absent” and must participate in a state assessment as a junior.
                                                      2


Grades and Content Areas Tested

        During the 2009-2010 school year, students with the most significant cognitive disabilities will be
assessed in language arts literacy and mathematics at grades 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 11. Students will be
assessed in Science at grades 4 and 8, and in grade 9, 10, 11, or 12, in whichever year the student
receives instruction in biology. These content areas are required as the APA program must parallel the
content areas tested in the general state assessments.
Determining Which Educators Will Need to be Trained in the APA Process

         It is important to create a list of all students who will participate in the APA this year in order to
identify the educators involved with these students. For each school that has APA students, one
administrator/test coordinator must attend a mandatory one day training session. A maximum of one
administrator per school and one district level administrator may attend the training sessions. Teachers
who provide instruction to a student participating in the APA must also be trained in the APA process.

Administrator Training Registration Process

         Chief School Administrators: The mandatory one day training for administrators (9 a.m. –
1:30 p.m.) will focus on student participation guidelines for APA, the administrators’ role and
responsibilities, the APA design, and common errors in 2008-2009. Each APA school and district must
assign an administrator (special education director, principal, director of curriculum, child study team
member, etc.) to the role of test coordinator. The APA test coordinators must register and attend a one
day training session to obtain all pertinent information on the oversight of the APA process. These training
sessions will be held September 22, 23, 24, and 25, 2009.

         It is recommended that administrators utilize the online registration system, which lets you
know immediately if the session you wish to attend has space available, or if you need to select another
session. By using this system, you will quickly receive a registration confirmation that confirms your seat
at the desired training session. This confirmation document should be printed and brought with you
to the training session. Registering online is the only way to know immediately that your session
registration is accepted; therefore you are encouraged to use this system. To register online for a training
session, please go to http://pem.ncspearson.com/nj/apa.

         If online registration is not possible, please use Attachment B to register each person attending
the training. The deadline for registration is September 16, 2009.


Training for APA Teachers

         Teachers: Training for teachers is now available exclusively online beginning early September
2009. Each teacher who provides instruction to APA students must participate in the APA teacher
training available on the Pearson website http://pem.ncspearson.com/nj/apa. The training presentation
has been split into modules that must be downloaded from the website along with additional training
materials. While viewing the power point slides the teachers will also hear the presenters discuss the
information. Speaker’s power point notes, which mirror the presenter’s aural comments, are available to
download for those educators with hearing impairments. The Procedures Manual must also be reviewed
in order to be prepared to implement the APA.

          Districts may choose to select a work day in which all teachers gather to view the full day online
training session, or may choose to ask teachers to select different work days to participate in the training.
In addition, the training modules are designed to be viewed in multiple sessions if desired, allowing
teachers to view the modules across different work days. It is recommended that all APA teachers view
the training materials prior to September 30, 2009 in order to have enough time to produce the initial
instructional evidence required. In addition, the training materials will be available throughout the
collection periods, allowing teachers to review any section of the training at any time. There is no
registration required for the online teacher training.
                                                        3


Online Collection of District/School Information

        Under a separate mailing, we will request each district and school to submit the total number of
students per grade participating in the APA for the 2009-2010 school year. You will also be asked to
review, and confirm or revise, the mailing address and contact information for each APA site. Failure to
provide this information will result in a delay or failed delivery of APA materials and information.
Please prepare to provide this information in the next few weeks.

        If you need further information about the plans for the alternate assessment, the training sessions
to be held this fall, or any other aspect of the APA, please contact Elizabeth Celentano, Office of State
Assessments, at 609-984-0107 or email: Elizabeth.Celentano@doe.state.nj.us; you may also contact
Pearson’s New Jersey Customer Support at 888-705-9416 or email: njapacustsvc@pearson.com.

TP/EC/2009-2010 APA training schedule.doc
Attachments
Memo only
    c: Willa Spicer
       Kenneth Figgs
       Roberta Wohle
       Elizabeth Celentano
       Executive County Superintendents
       County Test Coordinators
       Chief School Administrators
       Charter School Lead Persons
       Directors of Approved Private Schools for the Disabled
       Directors of College-Operated Programs
       Directors of State Facilities
       Directors of Special Education Services
       NJ LEE Group
       Garden State Coalition of Schools
                                              4

                                        Attachment A

         Guidelines to Determine Which Students Should Participate in the
                        New Jersey Statewide Assessment
                  Through the Alternate Proficiency Assessment


The New Jersey APA was developed for two purposes:

      To measure the progress of a small percentage of students with disabilities
       who cannot participate in the regular statewide assessments even with
       accommodations.

      To ensure that the educational results for all students are included in the
       statewide accountability system at the individual, school, district, and state levels.

The Individualized Education Program (IEP) team makes decisions about state
assessment participation. The IEP must determine for each content area assessed,
whether an individual will participate in the general assessment or the APA. The New
Jersey special education rules and regulations specify that:

Students with disabilities shall participate in the Alternate Proficiency in each
content area where the nature of the student’s disability is so severe that the
student is not receiving instruction in any of the knowledge and skills measured
by the general statewide assessment and the student cannot complete any of the
types of questions on the assessment in the content area(s) even with
accommodations and modifications (N.J.A.C. 6A:14-4.10(a)2).

The United States Department of Education (USDOE) nonregulatory guidance
regarding achievement standards for students with the most significant cognitive
disabilities provides further clarification regarding student eligibility for participation in
the alternate assessment based on alternate achievement standards. The guidance
states that:

“only students with the most significant cognitive disabilities may be assessed
based on alternate achievement standards….the Department intended the term
“students with the most significant cognitive disabilities” to include that small number of
students who are (1) within one or more of the existing categories of disability under the
IDEA (e.g., autism, multiple disabilities, traumatic brain injury, etc.); and (2) whose
cognitive impairments may prevent them from attaining grade-level achievement
standards, even with the very best instruction.”

The USDOE non-regulatory guidance for alternate assessments can be viewed online
at http://www.ed.gov/policy/elsec/guid/altguidance.doc.

The attached chart provides the individual determinations that must be made to
determine student eligibility for participation in the APA.
                                           5

        Guidelines to Determine Which Students Should Participate in the
                       New Jersey Statewide Assessment
                 Through the Alternate Proficiency Assessment
                                  2009 - 2010
Student Name:_______________________________

General assessment given at the student’s grade level:
NJ ASK3_____      NJ ASK4_____ NJ ASK5_____ NJ ASK6_____
NJ ASK7_____      NJ ASK8_____ HSPA_____
                                    Language Arts
         Content Area                  Literacy        Mathematics              Science*
           Question                  Yes       No      Yes     No             Yes      No

1. Is the nature of the student’s
cognitive disability severe?

2. Is the student’s cognitive
disability so severe that the
student is not receiving instruction
in any of the knowledge and skills
measured by the general
statewide assessment?

3. Is the student’s cognitive
disability so severe that the
student cannot complete any of
the types of questions on the
assessment in the content area,
even with accommodations and
modifications?

4. Is the student’s Individualized
Education Program (IEP) aligned
to grade level New Jersey Core
Curriculum Content Standards
through modified expectations?

*Grades 4 & 8, and Grade 9, 10, 11, or 12 – the year the student receives Biology
instruction.

If the IEP team has answered yes to all of the questions above for a content area, the
student should participate in Statewide Assessment through the Alternate Proficiency
Assessment for the applicable content area.
My signature confirms the accuracy of the information noted above.


Director or Designee                                     Date
         A SIGNED COPY OF THIS FORM MUST BE SUBMITTED WITH THE PORTFOLIO
                                                                 6

                                                        Attachment B

                                        New Jersey Alternate Proficiency Assessment
                                                  Administrator Training

To be completed by: Administrators, APA Test Coordinators, and Child Study Team Members
This training session will focus on the student participation guidelines for APA, the administrators’ role and
responsibilities, and the current design of the APA, score report formats, and student participation guidelines.
Directions: Please use this form when registering for a training session. Use a separate form for each person who will attend
any of the following sessions.
The location and directions for each session is listed on Attachment C. Note that meals will not be provided.


                                   Check Only One Training Session to Attend

                            September 22, 2009 Marriott Hotel, Hanover, NJ (Northwest)

                                            _____    9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

                           September 23, 2009 Marriott Hotel, Saddle Brook, NJ (North)

                                            _____    9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

                September 24, 2009 The Conference Center at Mercer, West Windsor, NJ (Central)

                                            _____    9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

                            September 25, 2009 Quality Inn, Maple Shade, NJ (South)

                                            _____    9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

       Please provide the information listed below when using the online registration site or if you need to contact
       Pearson’s New Jersey Customer Support Center.

Name
County                                                District
School Name

Address
City                                      State                        Zip Code
Phone                                                 Fax (optional)
Email (required to receive confirmation email)
Please indicate if you need any special accommodations, e.g. ASL interpreter, etc.


Deadline for registration is September 16, 2009.
Please register each person separately. To register online for a training session, please go to
http://pem.ncspearson.com/nj/apa
                                                                      7

                                                               Attachment C

                                           New Jersey Alternate Proficiency Assessment

                                                               Directions

Saddle Brook Marriott: Garden State Parkway at I-80, Saddle Brook, NJ. Ph: 201-843-9500

From the Garden State Parkway North: Exit 159 (Route 80) Saddle Brook and bear right off of exit. The hotel will be
approximately 500 ft on your right.

From Route 80: Take Exit 62. Follow signs to Midland Ave. Hotel will be on left before you reach Midland Ave.

The Conference Center at Mercer: 1200 Old Trenton Road, West Windsor, NJ. Ph: 609-570-3643
From North or South via US 1: Exit onto Quakerbridge Road (South 533). After two miles, turn left onto Hughes Drive. Follow
Hughes Drive PAST the entrance to Mercer County Park. Turn left into the campus of Mercer County Community College, then
bear right and follow signs for The Conference Center at Mercer.

From North or South via Interstate 95/295:Take Interstate 95 (which becomes Interstate 295) to Exit 65A, Sloan Ave. East.
East on Sloan Avenue (becomes Flock Road) to end (Edinburg Road). Left onto Edinburg Road to MCCC campus entrance (use
jughandle on right). Once on campus, The Conference Center at Mercer is the building straight ahead.

From North via NJ Turnpike: Take NJ Turnpike Exit 8 at Hightstown to Rt. 33 West. Rt. 33 West to Rt. 571 in downtown
Hightstown. Right onto Rt. 571. Continue on Rt. 571 to Rt. 535. Left onto Rt. 535/Old Trenton Road; go five miles to the MCCC
campus entrance on right (after Mercer County Park). Once on campus, The Conference Center at Mercer is the building straight
ahead.

From South via NJ Turnpike: NJ Turnpike Exit 7A to Interstate 195 West (towards Trenton). I-195 West to Exit 5B (Rt. 130
North). Rt. 130 North to first traffic light (Rt. 526). Left onto Rt. 526 to next traffic light (T-intersection with Rt. 33). Bear left at
light, and then take immediate right (still 526). Follow Rt. 526 to end.
Turn left onto Rt. 535/Old Trenton Rd.; go two miles to MCCC campus entrance on right (after Mercer County Park). Once on
campus, The Conference Center at Mercer is the building straight ahead.


Maple Shade Quality Inn – Grand Versailles: 531 Route 38 West, Maple Shade, NJ. Ph: 856-234-8314

From 295- Exit 36B to Rt. 73N. 1 mile to Rt. 38W. Hotel is on the right.

From NJ Turnpike - Exit 4 to Rt. 73N 1 mile to Rt. 38W. Hotel is on the right.

From Philadelphia - Betsy Ross Bridge to Rt. 73S. Hotel 5 miles on your right. From Tacony Bridge - Follow 73S Hotel is 6
miles on the right.

Hanover Marriott: 1401 Route 10 East, Whippany, NJ. Ph: 973-538-8811

From Route 80: Take exit 43 to I-287 South. Take Exit 39B, Route 10 West. Go through first traffic light (you will see the hotel
on other side of highway at this point), stay in right lane and take second right after the light (sign reads Cedar Knolls U-Turn).
This will bring you to Route 10 East. We are the first entrance on right.

From NJ Turnpike: Take exit 10, Route 287 North. Follow Route 287 North to Exit 39, Route 10 West. Go through first traffic
light (you will see the hotel on other side of highway at this point), stay in right lane and take second right after the light (sign
reads Cedar Knolls U-Turn). This will bring you to Route 10 East. We are the first entrance on right.

From Route 287: Take exit 39, Route 10 West. Go through first traffic light (you will see the hotel on other side of highway at
this point), stay in right lane and take second right after the light (sign reads Cedar Knolls U-Turn). This will bring you to Route 10
East. We are the first entrance on right.