DATE: June 9, 2017
TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Steven R. Staples, Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT:

Algebra Readiness Diagnostic Test (ARDT)


Since July 2002, the Virginia Algebra Readiness Initiative (ARI) has provided funding for mathematics intervention services for students in grades 6, 7, 8, and 9 who are at risk of failing the Algebra I end-of-course assessment, as demonstrated by their individual performance on diagnostic tests. As a component of the Algebra Readiness Initiative, the Virginia Department of Education developed the Algebra Readiness Diagnostic Test (ARDT) for use as an online tool to support schools in assessing and diagnosing each student’s mathematical strengths and weaknesses in relation to the Virginia Mathematics Standards of Learning (SOL) spanning grades 3 through Algebra I.

In fall 2017, Virginia transitions to a new test administration system which will not provide the functionality to support the Algebra Readiness Diagnostic Test. The ARDT will no longer be available for use as a diagnostic tool in school divisions after September 30, 2017.

The Algebra Readiness Diagnostic Test administration window for the 2017-2018 school year will open on August 14, 2017, but will only be available until September 29, 2017.  Divisions that are unable to pre-test students prior to the end of September, will need to utilize other diagnostic tests, in lieu of the ARDT, to assist in identifying the mathematical skills on which remediation efforts will be focused for each student served through the Algebra Readiness Initiative.  Since post testing using the ARDT will not be accessible, demonstration of student improvement as a result of receiving ARI services during 2017-2018 will need to be determined using other evidence, which may include the results of Virginia end-of-year Mathematics Standards of Learning assessments or individual student data generated by other post tests. In 2017-2018, every school division will be asked to submit an end-of-year Algebra Readiness Intervention report to the Virginia Department of Education.  This report will outline the remediation efforts used, the number of students who received ARI services, and the number of students demonstrating improvement. This is a change from previous school years in that all divisions utilizing Algebra Readiness Initiative funding will be asked to submit a written report to the Virginia Department of Education. The Virginia ARI annual report template will be made available to school divisions in late fall of 2017.

For additional information about the Algebra Readiness Initiative, please contact Tina Mazzacane, Mathematics Coordinator, Office of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, by email at tina.mazzacane@doe.virginia.gov or at (804) 225-4849.  

SRS/TLM/tfk