Director of Learning Report

April 28, 2012

TO:                 Michael Green, Superintendent
Asha Riley

RE: Instruction, Curriculum, Assessment, and Professional Development Monthly Update

State Testing Difficulties:  As resources have dwindled at the state so has staffing in the assessment department at OSPI. With these changes I regret to report that implementation of state testing this year has been rough. Communication prior to testing has been significantly delayed with planning resources only available a week prior to testing. In one instance we received our online testing proctor manuals two days after we started testing. Fortunately Cari, Chris and Mo Anderson are proactive and have been able to work around most of these problems, which in the case above meant printing the 150 page manual for each teacher prior to testing.

Online testing in particular has had the most issues and is leaving me a bit anxious about what our results will look like next Fall. We have faced challenges like students being timed out of the online test due to connectivity issues at OSPI, or being logged of their test out as if their test was completed when they know they were not done and unable to re-enter the test. This and other types of technical difficulties can be very frustrating to students and result in poor performance. I am documenting all of these issues and which students they have impacted. During the reconciliation process this summer I will be sure to review results of these students. If there is evidence these technical difficulties resulted in poor performance of these students I will be sure to communicate to the state the injustice of the situation. As you are aware results of student performance on these tests can result in AYP sanctions. If these results are a result of poor assessment operations rather than true student performance I will challenge their findings and seek a waiver where possible.

Consolidated Program Review:  On April 19th we received notice we have successfully completed our Consolidated Program Review. This comprehensive audit of our district program and operations was quite in depth and lengthy. Overall we did very well with a few minor changes to documents we are required to keep and procedures we have in place. We may have more information coming regarding our Alternative Learning Experience programs but have not heard yet what changes we need to make in those programs. Thanks to Deb Kernen, Stacey, John and Cari in this effort.