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Educator Evaluation

Using the MCAS Alternate Assessment in Educator Evaluation

A small number of students with the most significant disabilities participate in the MCAS Alternate Assessment (MCAS-Alt). MCAS-Alt consists of a portfolio of specific materials, reflecting progress towards standards-based measurable outcomes, that is collected annually by the teacher and student. The student's IEP team is responsible for determining whether the student takes the standard statewide assessment, with or without accommodations, or the MCAS-Alt. Read more about the MCAS-Alt.

While the MCAS-Alt is not a required measure in the MA Educator Evaluation Framework, districts may choose to use the MCAS-Alt as a District-Determined Measure (DDM) for determining an educator's impact on student learning, growth, and achievement. DESE has developed a process educators may follow when using the MCAS-Alt as a DDM. The process is designed to set parameters for growth that are individualized to each student but calibrated by educator teams to establish comparability.

The process is broken down into two meetings: the Calibration Conversation and the Impact Conversation. The team for these meetings should include a minimum of the following four educators to establish validity:

  • Educator: the educator whose impact is being assessed
  • Evaluator: the educator's evaluator
  • Consulting General Educator: any general education teacher currently teaching one of the subject areas being assessed through MCAS-Alt
  • Consulting Special Educator: any special education teacher or administrator who can bring expertise in the area of specially designed instruction for students with disabilities
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Using the MCAS Alternate Assessment in Educator Evaluation

Webinar (Training Resource): Using the MCAS-Alt in Educator Evaluation

This webinar, recorded on 6/23/15, explains DESE's recommended process for using the MCAS-Alt in Educator Evaluation.

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Webinar Slides

Calibration Conversation (Fall)

The goal of the calibration conversation is to develop parameters for high, moderate, and low growth for each measurable outcome. It is the responsibility of the special educator being evaluated to bring a set of completed MCAS-Alt Strand Cover Sheets, baseline data, and appropriate sections of the MCAS-Alt Resource Guide to this meeting.

Impact Conversation (Spring)

The goal of the impact conversation is to provide evaluators with additional context about student learning, growth, and achievement. It is the responsibility of the special educator being evaluated to bring completed MCAS-Alt data charts to this meeting. The final responsibility for determining an educator's impact is solely that of the evaluator.



Last Updated: July 24, 2015
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