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Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System

Student Assessment Update: May 10, 2017

Contact Information

MCAS Service Center
Phone: 800-737-5103
for logistical support, including tech support for PearsonAccess Next and TestNav

Student Assessment Services
Phone: 781-338-3625
for policy questions, including student participation

Latest Updates from Student Assessment Services

Update and Reminder on Standard-Setting Panel Recruitment

At this time, we are pleased to announce that, in addition to previously offered reimbursements, stipends will be offered to all panelists selected to serve during the standard setting event this summer.

As a reminder, we are looking for panelists with content expertise, familiarity with the Massachusetts curriculum frameworks, and in most cases, direct teaching experience in the grade and subject matter chosen. More information about this opportunity, including details on stipends and reimbursements, can be found at 2017 MCAS Standard Setting Panelist Application.

Applications for interested standard-setting panelists are due on Friday, May 19.

Student Data Cleanup in PearsonAccess Next (PAN)

Principals (or their designee) will need to update student registration information in PearsonAccess Next (PAN) after testing, according to the instructions below. Additional guidance for completing testing appears in the grades 3-8 Principal's Administration Manual (PAM) beginning on page 57 for CBT and on page 62 for PBT (as well as PBT instructions in the PAM Appendix D supplement Download MS WORD Document).

As a reminder, changes made in PAN to student registrations also need to be made in SIMS (to find your district SIMS contact, go online here, select SIMS Contact from the Function menu, and click Get Results).

 Instructions for CBTInstructions for PBT
A student was added to or removed from your school's enrollment before or during the testing window.
  • Remove the student from any assigned test sessions (Testing > Students in Sessions > Remove Students from Sessions) and unassign any tests that the student did not start (Setup > Students > Manage Student Tests).
  • "Mark Complete" any tests that the student started but did not finish (Testing > Students in Sessions > Mark Student Tests Complete).
  • If the student did not test at all: Do not assign an answer booklet to a student (if one is already assigned, follow the instructions in the "void" section below).
  • If the student tested one or more sessions: Fill in one of the circles in the "Change of Enrollment Status" section on the outside back cover of the answer booklet.
A student refused accommodations during testing or did not use an accommodation.
  • Update PAN so it accurately reflects the accommodations that the student did use (Setup > Students > Manage Student Tests).
  • Text-to-speech, screen reader, and assistive technology cannot be updated in PAN after testing. Changes to these accommodations will need to be reported to the Department during the formal discrepancy reporting window in August.
Update PAN so it accurately reflects the accommodations that the student did use (Setup > Students > Manage Student Tests).
A student had a medically documented absence for one or more test sessions.Mark the test as "Not Tested, Medical Absence" (Setup > Students > Manage Student Tests).Fill in the circle in the "Absence" section on the outside back cover of the answer booklet.
A student was absent for another reason or refused testing.Mark the test as "Complete" (Testing > Students in Sessions > Mark Student Tests Complete) and write in the reason "Absent" or "Refusal."Do not assign an answer booklet to a student if the student did not participate in testing (if one is already assigned, follow the instructions in the "void" section below). If a student took one or more sessions, submit the booklet as is.
A student participated in the MCAS-Alt.Remove student from any assigned test sessions (Testing > Students in Sessions > Remove Students from Sessions) and unassign tests (Setup > Students > Manage Student Tests).Do not assign an answer booklet to the student.
A student's test needs to be marked "void" (i.e., it will not be scored and no student results will be reported).
  • Only students who started testing should be marked as Void (e.g., incorrect accommodations were given, there was a technical failure).
  • Go to Setup > Students > Manage Student Tests, select the "Void" checkbox, and select a reason from the dropdown menu.
Fill in the circle in the "Void Answer Booklet" section on the outside back cover of the answer booklet. Write "VOID" across the front of the booklet. Return the booklet in the Void Envelope in the scorable shipment.

Accessibility and Accommodations Materials for Students Taking CBTs

The Principal's Administrative Manual (PAM) for grades 3-8 omitted instructions on next steps following testing for accessibility and accommodations materials such as graphic organizers, reference sheets, and checklists for students taking computer-based tests. After test administration, schools should securely destroy these materials (e.g., by shredding) if they contain any text or other marks added by students, and indicate on the internal tracking form that this step has been completed. (Scratch paper should be destroyed in the same manner.)

Opportunity to Recommend Changes to a Department-Approved ELA Graphic Organizer or Supplemental Mathematics Reference Sheet

The Department is seeking proposals to add or change information listed on a current version of the pre-approved ELA graphic organizer or supplemental mathe matics reference sheets. Graphic organizers and supplemental reference sheets are intended to reduce disability-related barriers that may prevent students from demonstrating the knowledge and skills required on the grades 3-8 MCAS tests.Note that these materials may be used only by students with disabilities who have this accommodation (A9) listed in an IEP or 504 plan.

To submit a recommendation, please complete the attached form Download MS WORD Document and return it to the Department according to the instructions no later than June 30, 2017.

Important Dates

  • May 12, 12:00 p.m.: (Grade 10 mathematics) Last day to complete the PCPA (Materials Received section); report packing discrepancies, if necessary; and order additional materials, if necessary
  • May 15: Parent/Guardian Reports for the February Biology test and March Retest delivered to districts via UPS
  • May 22: Receive test materials for high school STE
  • May 22-June 1: (High school STE) Deadline to complete the PCPA (Materials Received section); report packing discrepancies, if necessary; and order additional materials, if necessary
  • May 23: Last day for Grade 10 Mathematics make-up testing
  • May 24, 3:00 p.m.: Last day to complete the PCPA and schedule UPS pickup for Grade 10 Mathematics
  • May 25: Last day for Grade 10 Mathematics UPS pickup
  • May 30, 3:00 p.m.: (Grades 3-8) Last day to complete the PCPA after testing; update students' accommodations in PearsonAccessnext, if necessary; mark students' tests complete; and schedule UPS pickup of Mathematics and STE materials
  • May 31: Last day for UPS pickup of Mathematics and STE materials for grades 3-8
  • May 31: Districts receive ACCESS for ELLs score reports (printed and online)
  • June 9, 3:00 p.m.: Last day to complete the PCPA and schedule UPS pickup for high school STE
  • June 12: Last day for UPS pickup for high school STE

Additional MCAS Resources and Other Information from DESE

View External Link
Guidance on Using "Resume" and "Resume Upload" in PAN
View External Link
Guidance on Using "Set Section Start" in PAN for Students Testing Out Of Sequence
View External Link
MCAS Office Hours Session for Grades 3-8 from April 28
View External Link
Equation Editor Symbol Key
 
Mathematics Gridded Response Guidelines: Grades 3-5 and Grades 6-8

Please be aware that the Office of Educator Development will be sending out the Induction & Mentoring District Report template to districts & collaboratives at the end of May via email.

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Subscriber Information

Principals, MCAS test coordinators, special education directors, and ELL directors automatically receive this Student Assessment Update based on contact information submitted to the Department. To change your email address or to add another staff member who serves in one of these roles, please follow the instructions below:

  • Public school districts, public schools, charter public schools: submit the new email address to your District-Level Directory Administrator.
  • Educational collaboratives, approved private special education schools, test sites, adult education programs, out-of-state schools, SEIS-DYS programs: go online to the EOE Information Technology web page (select "District/School Information Update" as the subject) to submit your update (be sure to include your District and School Code).

For others who wish to subscribe, email imailsrv@list1.doe.mass.edu with the following information in the body of the email: "subscribe SASUpdate Your_Name" (Example: subscribe SASUpdate John_Smith). To unsubscribe, send an email to the same address with the following information in the body: "unsubscribe SASUpdate."

We welcome your questions and feedback at mcas@doe.mass.edu. Thank you.



Last Updated: May 11, 2017
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