P. O. BOX 2120

May 2, 1997


TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Richard T. La Pointe
Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: Outcome Accountability Project

     Enclosed are the data collection forms for the 1996-97
  Outcome Accountability Project (OAP) data.  The data requested
  on these forms are the same as in previous years.  The data
  collection forms have been customized for each school in your
  division.  The 1996-97 data will be released by the Department
  of Education in early spring 1998.

     To lessen the data collection impact at the local level,
  we are not asking localities to submit a division report;
  rather, the division data will be derived from the individual
  school reports.  Detailed instructions are included for the
  completion of the data collection forms.  A reference sheet,
  Avoiding Errors When Completing the Outcome Accountability
  Project Data Collection Form, 1996-97 School Year" has been
  included.  It is for your use in checking your data for
  potential errors prior to submission.  It outlines areas where
  errors have often occurred and how to prevent them.  We hope
  this will be helpful to you.  You need not submit the
  reference sheet with your data collection forms. 

     A key factor during the OAP data collection process is
  the designation of a central office staff person as the OAP
  contact.  This person will be responsible for distributing and
  collecting the forms from your schools, forwarding them to the
  Department, and serving as liaison between your schools and
  the Department.  The contact person should keep a copy of the
  data collection forms submitted.  All inquiries by Department
  staff regarding the data will be directed to the OAP contact

     The OAP Data Collection Transmittal Form should accompany
  the school data collection forms when they are submitted to
  the Department by the OAP contact person.  All school data
  collection forms should be submitted in one mailing.  The
  deadline for submission is September 15, 1997.  The OAP Data
  Collection Transmittal Form contains the name, address, and
  telephone and fax numbers for the OAP contact person named in
  1995-96.  Please make corrections to this information on the
  lines provided.  If there are no changes, the lines should
  remain blank.  A list of schools from which we anticipate data
  has been included on this form.

     The data collected in the OAP Data Collection Form are
  data not requested in other Department reports.  OAP
  requirements have been incorporated into existing Department
  reports whenever possible.

     The data collection forms should be completed and
  returned by September 15, 1997, and should be addressed to:

             Outcome Accountability Project Team
               Virginia Department of Education
                   Assessment and Reporting
                        P. O. Box 2120
                Richmond, Virginia 23218-2120

  To allow divisions ample opportunity to verify their
  data, the timely receipt of these data collection forms is
  necessary.  The Department will compile and return the data to
  divisions so that the verification process can be completed by
  November 7, 1997.  No changes to these data will be made after
  this date.

     Your cooperation in completing these data collection
  forms and your commitment to accuracy is greatly appreciated. 
  Should you have any questions regarding this data collection
  process, please direct them to Judy Singh at (804) 786-1390 or
  Dan Keeling at (804) 371-2769.


  Attachments: A hard copy of this memo and its attachment
               will be sent to the superintendent's office.