COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
P.O. BOX 2120
RICHMOND, VIRGINIA 23218-2120
SUPTS. MEMO NO. 37
July 13, 2001
ADMINISTRATIVE
 
TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Jo Lynne DeMary
Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: Web-based Standards of Learning Technology
Initiative Update

The intent of the Web-based Standards of Learning Technology Initiative is to use Web-enabled systems to improve Standards of Learning instructional, remedial, and testing capabilities of high schools. Funding for this program is targeted to support three general goals in each high school. These goals are: providing student access to computers with a ratio of one computer for every five students, creating Internet-ready local area network capability in every school, and assuring adequate high speed, high bandwidth capability for high school instructional, remedial, and testing needs.

On June 2, 2000 (Supts. Memo No. 113; /administrators/superintendents_memos/2000/inf113.html), divisions were asked to complete an "Intent to Participate" statement by August 1, 2000. Divisions were also asked to submit their "Plan for the Use of the Funds" by November 1, 2000.

As part of the initiative, a demonstration of Web-based test delivery was undertaken in March, 2001. As a result of the demonstration, on June 15, 2001, the Virginia Department of Education announced the contract renewal of NCS Pearson, Inc. for the Web-based delivery of the Virginia Standards of Learning End-of-Course tests. A report on the demonstration project is available on the Department of Education's website at http://www.pen.k12.va.us/VDOE/Technology/soltech/soltech.html.

Also as a result of the demonstration, the Department of Education has revised the "Architectural Guidelines for High School Readiness" and finalized the process for certifying high schools. These documents are available at http://www.pen.k12.va.us/VDOE/Technology/soltech/soltech.html.

In order for the Department of Education to plan further for the transition to Web-based testing at the high school level in Spring, 2003, school divisions are asked to complete a brief survey by August 15, 2001. The survey and directions for submission are available at http://www.pen.k12.va.us/VDOE/Technology/soltech/soltech.html. Two types of information are needed. First, the Department of Education's Division of Technology is requesting when school divisions prefer to seek certification of high schools for the SOL Technology Initiative. Second, the Department's Division of Assessment and Reporting is requesting which school divisions are interested in participating in on-line testing prior to Spring, 2003. Thank you in advance for your cooperation and prompt response.

For more information, please contact Sarah Susbury (mailto:ssusbury@mail.vak12ed.edu), manager of technology services, at 804-786-5823 or Mark Schaefermeyer (mailto:mschaefe@mail.vak12ed.edu), associate director for web based assessment at 804-225-2998.

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