August 19, 2016

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Steven R. Staples, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: Changes in Approved Substitute Tests for Verified Credit

 

As permitted by the Standards for Accrediting Public Schools (8VAC20-131-110This link takes you out of the Virginia Department of Education website), the Virginia Board of Education has approved various “substitute” tests for the purpose of awarding verified credit to students. Virginia’s approved substitute tests are not developed by the Virginia Department of Education but rather are made available by external organizations and test publishers. Periodically, changes are implemented by test publishers that affect Virginia’s existing list of approved substitute tests.

In March 2016, the College Board implemented new versions of the SAT I assessments that included revisions to the content being assessed, the number of test questions, the length of time allotted, and the reporting scales for all content areas. As a result, the SAT I Writing assessment and SAT I Mathematics Subtest assessment on the list of approved substitute tests are valid only if administered prior to March, 2016.  This change is reflected in the revised Approved Substitute Tests for Verified Credit document.

The Virginia Department of Education will convene teacher committees tasked with reviewing the College Board’s new SAT Writing and Language assessment and the new SAT Mathematics assessment. The teacher committees will develop recommendations for the Virginia Board of Education regarding the minimum score points to be used for awarding verified credits for these assessments.

Two additional tests currently on the approved substitute test list have been renamed by the College Board. The SAT II Math IC assessment is now called the SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 1. The SAT II Math IIC assessment is now called the SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 2. The revised names have been noted on the list of approved substitute tests. No other changes have occurred to these SAT II assessments or their associated cut scores for awarding verified credit.

The revised Approved Substitute Tests for Verified Credit document reflecting these changes is now available on the Virginia the Department of Education’s Web page for Substitute Tests.

Questions regarding this information should be directed to student assessment staff at Student_Assessment@doe.virginia.gov or (804) 225-2102.

SRS/SLR/cb