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January 5, 2007

ISBE DELL e-Broadcast 2007.49 - Assessing ELLs: A Collaborative Invitation for Educators

As part of a collaborative project, the ISBE Divisions of Assessment and English Language Learning (DELL) and the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL) are seeking the assistance of local educators to suggest improvements for the ACCESS for ELLs ® Kindergarten ACCESS for ELLs and Kindergarten W-APT test. Specifically, we will be adapting the current tests to the new Pre K-K WIDA standards. With this in mind, local educators are invited to facilitate future test development in any of the five ways described below.

  1. Respond to a survey on how you currently use the K-WAPT test, what you use it for, and your reaction to individual items and to administration procedures. This information will guide us in framing the next version of the K-WAPT and maximize use for teachers and administrators. (The survey should take approximately 10 minutes to complete.)
  2. Allow a representative of ISBE/CAL to view the administration of the Kindergarten ACCESS for ELLs during the IL test window opening January 15, 2007. This will allow us to gather observational data about the strengths and weaknesses of the current test administration protocol and record test samples. This option will require local districts to obtain parental release forms for the recordings. A brief interview with the kindergarten teacher(s) administering ACCESS will follow the observation.
  3. Serve as an item writer for the new instruments. While the level of effort may vary, CAL will reimburse experienced kindergarten teachers for their time at $30.00 per hour. In addition to item writing, participating kindergarten teachers will participate in one-day training to be held in Illinois at a time and date still to be determined.
  4. Serve on an item basis and content review panel in early April 2007. This will be a day long effort held at a still to be determined location. Transportation and per diem expenses will be paid by CAL and the effort will qualify for professional development units.
  5. Allow ISBE Student Assessment/CAL to field test the new test instruments in your district schools during May 2007. These tests will be conducted by staff from CAL.

In closing, if educators from your district would be willing to participate in any of the options described above, please contact Emily Evans at CAL by email eevans@cal.org or by phone at (202)355-1551.

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