Superintendent’s Memo #138-13

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education

May 24, 2013

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT:  Nominations for Substitute Test Review Committees

The Division of Student Assessment and School Improvement is seeking nominations for review committees for tests previously identified as substitute tests for verified credits. Substitute tests for verified credit are described as follows in the Regulations Establishing Standards for Accrediting Public Schools in Virginia, Section 8 VAC 20-131-110C, Standard and Verified Units of Credit at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/boe/accreditation/index.shtml:

The Board of Education may from time to time approve additional tests for the purpose of awarding verified credit. Such additional tests, which enable students to earn verified units of credit must, at a minimum, meet the following criteria:

  1. The test must be standardized and graded independently of the school or school division in which the test is given;
  2. The test must be knowledge based;
  3. The test must be administered on a multistate or international basis, or administered as part of another state’s accountability assessment program; and
  4. To be counted in a specific academic area, the test must measure content that incorporates or exceeds the SOL content in the course for which verified credit is given.

A list of previously approved SOL Substitute Tests for Verified Credit, updated May 12, 2011, and the related scores for “proficient” and advanced” are located at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/substitute_tests/index.shtml.  Due to the revisions in the Standards of Learning for History and Social Science (2008), Mathematics (2009), English and Science (2010), it is necessary to review the approved substitute tests for verified credit and related cut scores to represent “proficient” and “advanced.”
The committee meetings will be held in Richmond, Virginia on the dates indicated below and will include the following committees:

The review committees will be responsible for:

  1. verifying that the previously approved SOL Substitute Tests for Verified Credit are still appropriate;
  2. verifying that the existing cut scores for “proficient” and “advanced” for the approved SOL Substitute Tests for Verified Credit are still appropriate; or
  3. recommending new cut scores for “proficient” and “advanced” for the previously approved SOL Substitute Tests for Verified Credit that will be submitted to the Virginia Board of Education for approval.

Approximately six teachers will be selected to serve on each committee. School divisions are encouraged to nominate a high school representative for each committee. Committee members will be chosen based on the following criteria:

Committee members will be provided the following:

School divisions will be reimbursed for substitute teacher pay at a rate of $75 per day during the school year.
All nominees who wish to serve on the standard setting committees must complete the Web-based application using the Assessment Committee Application Processing System (ACAPS). The Web-based application process requires a professional reference and division-level approval. Procedures for submitting the Web-based application are available at https://p1pe.doe.virginia.gov/acaps/. Completed applications should be submitted to the Virginia Department of Education using ACAPS by July 11, 2013.

If you have questions, please contact the student assessment staff by e-mail at Student_Assessment@doe.virginia.gov

PIW/SLR/cb