SUPTS. MEMO NO. 19
February 9, 2001
|FROM:||Jo Lynne DeMary
Superintendent of Public Instruction
|SUBJECT:||Standards of Learning Assessment (SOL) Writing Tests – Administration Audit Information|
The Department of Education will again conduct audits of the Standards of Learning Assessment (SOL) Writing tests scheduled for the spring of 2001. A random sample of 10 percent of the schools in which the Writing test will be administered will be audited.
There are two purposes for the audit:
2) to gather information on ways to improve procedures to maximize efficiency while maintaining standardized procedures and test security.
To qualify to conduct administration audits, each auditor has completed at least one full day of training by the Department of Education and Harcourt Educational Measurement on the SOL and on audit procedures.
Attachments to this memo include:
SOL Administration Audit - Sample Letter of Introduction
SOL Administration Audit - Audit Information Sheet
SOL Administration Audit - Observation Checklist
SOL Administration Audit - Post-Test Examiner Protocol
SOL Administration Audit - Post-Test School Test
SOL Administration Audit - Evaluation of the Auditor and
While the audits will be unannounced, the Department of Education does not intend to surprise anyone regarding what is to be observed or asked, so we encourage you to share the attached materials with your staff. It is important that you share the essence of the audits with your staff members and teachers so that they are aware of the activity should their schools be audited. As noted in the attached procedures, your Division Director of Testing (DDOT) will be notified by fax the day prior to any audit to be conducted in the school division. The intent of that notification is to let the central office staff know that an auditor or auditors will be in the school division. However, the notification will not include the name of the school to be audited.
The audit procedures call for the auditor to meet with the School Test Coordinator (STC) in the school to be audited, observe the administration of one of the SOL tests in one classroom, and conduct post-observation meetings with the observed examiner and the STC. The principal of the school is encouraged to participate in these meetings. The auditor will also arrange to meet with the DDOT to discuss the audit that has been conducted.
In the event that more than one school in the division has been selected for audit, a single interview will be conducted with the DDOT after all audits in the division have been completed.
Auditors have been informed of the need to observe the protocol for visitors that is in effect for each school they visit. Each auditor will carry a letter of introduction on the letterhead of Harcourt Educational Measurement, and will present photo identification upon request. Each auditor also will have a one-page audit information sheet for school staff members who might want additional details. It is our intent that the audits be as unobtrusive, efficient, and useful as possible.
While information from the audit will be discussed in the post-observation meetings with the examiner, STC, and DDOT, auditors will leave copies of all completed audit protocols with the STC and DDOT once the audit is concluded. Additionally, an audit evaluation form will be left with each person involved in the audit process in each school.
During audits of previous SOL and VSAP administrations, we have observed many useful and innovative practices. Sharing of those practices has been a by-product of the audits, and we look forward to observing such practices during the upcoming SOL audits.
Thank you in advance for your cooperation in this activity. If you have questions or need additional information, please contact Scott Taylor (mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org), specialist for assessment, at (804) 225-2102.