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CDE News Release: Education stakeholders do not reach consensus on administration of CMAS math, English language arts tests for this spring

Dec. 2, 2020
For more information, contact:
CDE Communications Division, 720-668-6434

News Release

Education stakeholders do not reach consensus on administration of CMAS math, English language arts tests for this spring

Group supports PSAT, SAT tests for high school students 

DENVER – The final report by the COVID-19 Policy Implications Stakeholder Group released today recommends some statewide assessments should continue as planned this spring while others should not occur. No decision was reached on whether the Colorado Measures of Academic Success tests in mathematics and English language arts should be administered to the state’s third through eighth graders.

The Colorado General Assembly last spring called for the creation of a stakeholder group of Colorado education leaders to advise policymakers on what, if any, changes should be made to state law around testing and accountability because of the COVID-19 crisis. Final decisions are up to the legislature since these matters are tied to state law. 

On assessments, the group said schools should administer the PSAT and SAT to the extent that local health orders allow and that CMAS tests in science and social studies should be canceled in the spring. The group did not reach a consensus agreement on administering the CMAS mathematics and English language arts tests to third through eighth graders for a range of conflicting reasons. Some stakeholders wanted to administer the tests to be able to measure student learning loss and others did not want the tests to be conducted out of concern over the misinterpretation of the results within the context of COVID-19.




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The Business Meeting will be held via Zoom and only Delegates may join the call. Just like the recent Delegate Assembly held through Zoom, it will be live streamed on the CASB website for CASB members who are not Delegates. CASB members can log into the website to view. For help with login, click here

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CDE Update

Nov. 30, 2020
For more information, contact:
[email protected]
Dear Superintendents and BOCES Executive Directors,

We hope you all had a restful and safe holiday break. 

In this special edition of the CDE Update, we've included a reminder that districts must notify teachers by tomorrow about the extended READ Act teacher training deadline.

Below there is also information about the updated COVID-19 cases and outbreak guidance from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and news about the postponement of 2021 National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) assessments. Finally, we've included information about the Governor's Back-to-School Working Group.


Past editions of the CDE Update, and all COVID-19 special editions, are available on our website. Visit the COVID-19 Resources for Schools webpage for additional resources.
 

Skip to any of the following sections:

 

READ Act


READ Act teacher training deadline extended; districts must notify teachers by Dec. 1
 
The State Board of Education granted a six-month extension for kindergarten through third-grade teachers to complete the training requirements in evidence-based reading instruction required by the READ Act. Teachers will now have until Jan. 31, 2022, to complete their training requirements.

The extension is contingent upon districts notifying all K-3 teachers of the requirement by Tuesday, Dec. 1. The department anticipates including an assurance that districts, BOCES, and charters schools have communicated the requirement as part of the annual READ data collection this spring.  Districts, BOCES and charters that do not meet the requirements will be ineligible for READ Act funds for the 2022-23 school year. 

Teachers have various avenues for completing the requirement, including a no-cost option provided by CDE.  

For more information about the training requirement, visit the CDE website, or contact Andreia Simon, in the the P-3 Office, at [email protected]
 

Public Health Guidance


Updated isolation guidance and decision tools for educators
 
CDPHE recently updated the decision-support tools for educators, to aid them in determining who needs to quarantine after an exposure in the classroom or school setting.

The update is based on outbreak data and stakeholder input and is expected to result in schools being able to maintain staffing and remain in-person to a greater extent. This update also standardizes the protocol no matter what phase a county is on the Colorado COVID-19 Dial.

For a list of detailed changes, visit the Archived Latest Updates: 2020-21 Planning Framework and Toolkit webpage.

For more information, visit the CDPHE guidance on cases and outbreaks webpage.
 

Assessments


National Assessment of Education Progress postponed until 2022
 
NAEP grade four and eight mathematics and reading assessments have been postponed through the spring of 2022 due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, as decided by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) Commissioner, with support of the National Assessment Governing Board. 

Based on how NCES has approached sampling in the past, we expect that a new sample will be selected for 2022, meaning that schools selected for the reduced administration in 2021 may not be selected for 2022 and additional schools will be selected for the typical sized sample for 2022. 

The pandemic has presented a number of challenges that prevent a NAEP administration in the 2020-21 school year. Local restrictions on access to schools by outside personnel would reduce NAEP’s ability to validly, reliably, and safely collect and report NAEP data in 2021. In addition, the use of variable instructional models such as full-time online and hybrid instruction would have created administration challenges, such as requiring multiple sessions with smaller number of students within a school. Multiple NAEP administration sessions may create health and safety concerns for both testing proctors and students by increasing the risk of COVID-19 transition between NCES proctors and students, in part because the NAEP assessments are administered on NCES-provided devices. 

NCES continues to believe the exploration of educational experiences within the context of COVID-19 could be valuable to states and districts for the 2020-21 school year. NCES developed questions related to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic for inclusion in the school and teacher questionnaires, and is considering delivering them to teachers and administrators originally selected for the 2021 administration, despite the postponement of the NAEP assessments themselves. We will share more information on the questionnaires as it becomes available. 
 

Updates from Governor's Office


Back-to-school working group convened by governor
 
Gov. Polis recently announced the formation of a back-to-school working group to help plan the safe return of students to classrooms in January 2021.
 
The working group consists of teachers, other school staff, superintendents, elected school boards, charter school leaders, health officials and parents. The group will share perspectives and feedback with the governor, Commissioner of Education Katy Anthes and key public health leaders about school reopening.

The group held its first meeting on Nov. 25. For a list of group membership, read the governor's press release.

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