COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

P.O. BOX 2120

RICHMOND, VIRGINIA 23218-2120

SUPTS. MEMO NO. 5

January 5, 2006

INFORMATIONAL

TO:

Division Superintendents

 

FROM:

Patricia I. Wright

Acting Superintendent of Public Instruction

 

SUBJECT:

2005-2006 Flexibility for Limited English Proficient (LEP) Students in Grades K-2 for the English Language Proficiency Assessment

 

In April 2005, the United States Department of Education responded to the Virginia Board of Educations request for a waiver to the requirement that the annual assessment of English Language Proficiency (ELP) of Limited English Proficient (LEP) students in Kindergarten through grade 2 (K-2) include the assessment of reading and writing as well as listening and speaking. The United States Department of Education denied Virginias request for a waiver but indicated in its response that states may use a variety of assessments to measure the progress of LEP students. For example, LEP students in K-2 may demonstrate proficiency on state ELP standards in reading and writing with a portfolio of work samples or recorded structured observations of students classroom performance over a period of time. The ELP reading and writing assessments of K-2 students need not be group-administered, a paper/pencil test, or a single testing event.

 

For the 2005-2006 school year, school divisions may continue to use all four subtests of the Virginia Stanford English Language Proficiency (SELP) Preliteracy Assessment to fulfill the ELP assessment requirement for K-2 LEP students. However, school divisions also have the option of using a locally developed assessment or another alternative assessment to determine the English language proficiency of their LEP students in K-2.

 

If you have questions relating to the use of locally developed or selected instruments to assess one or more of the four skill areas (speaking, reading, writing, listening), please contact Laura Kennedy, (Laura.Kennedy@doe.virginia.gov) LEP assessment specialist, at (804) 371-0258; or Valerie Gooss (Valerie.Gooss@doe.virginia.gov) ESL specialist, at (804) 786-1692.

 

PIW/SLR/jc