Review of 2011 MCAS and Accountability Data
|To:||Superintendents, Principals, and Directors of Charter Schools, Approved Private Special Education Schools, Educational Collaboratives, and Institutional Programs|
|From:||Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D.|
Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education
|Date:||July 18, 2011|
I am writing to provide you with information regarding the release of 2011 MCAS and accountability data, including procedures and deadlines for MCAS and accountability data review and discrepancy reporting. Please note that you may NOT release any data to the public until the official release of school and district results in mid-September.
2011 MCAS and Accountability Data Review Schedule
School and district leaders will have access to full preliminary results for all spring 2011 MCAS tests beginning August 8, 2011. Results will be available initially in DropBox Central, and subsequently in the Education Data Warehouse (EDW), at the Department's Security Portal at https://www4.doemass.org/auth/Login.
We plan to provide school and district leaders access to preliminary school and district accountability data on August 9, 2011, also through the Department's Security Portal.
In September official student, school, and district MCAS results and official accountability reports, as well as 2011 NCLB Report Cards, will be released to schools, districts, and the public. Please note that schools and districts will not have the opportunity to preview official school and district aggregate MCAS results prior to the public release.
MCAS Discrepancy Reporting
The Department's online discrepancy reporting period for MCAS data will be open from August 8 through August 12, 2011. It is essential that principals and school leaders review their preliminary results during this period or delegate this task to a designee, as discrepancies reported after 5:00 p.m. on August 12 will not be corrected in time for the official September release of reports.
The online MCAS discrepancy reporting tool will be available at the MCAS Service Center website at www.mcasservicecenter.com/. Detailed instructions for reporting MCAS data discrepancies will be posted at the MCAS Service Center website and in the MCAS 2011 Data dropbox at the Department's Security Portal. The discrepancy reporting tool is password protected, and you must use the user name and password that were mailed to you in a Department memorandum dated January 3, 2011.
Accountability Discrepancy Reporting
The discrepancy reporting period for accountability data will be open from August 9 through August 12, 2011. Instructions for reporting discrepancies will be posted along with the preliminary data in the Security Portal. Please note that the reporting window for discrepancies related to the high school graduation rate for the 2010 cohort closed in winter 2011, and the end-of-year reporting window for SIMS-related discrepancies for the 2010-2011 school year closed on July 15, 2011.
On August 15, 2011, the Department plans to notify the schools and districts that it expects to identify for improvement, corrective action, or restructuring based on preliminary 2011 accountability data. This early notification is intended to help districts comply with the required federal 14-day NCLB School Choice notification to the parents/guardians of children attending Title I schools identified for improvement, corrective action, or restructuring.
Accessing MCAS and Accountability Data Online
To access MCAS data at the Department's Security Portal, visit https://www4.doemass.org/auth/Login and enter your user name and password to log in. To access reports and data files in your dropbox beginning August 8, select "DropBox Central" and then select "MCAS 2011 Data." To run reports in the EDW beginning August 16, select "Data Warehouse" and then select "Public Folders" at the top of the "Welcome to the Education Data Warehouse" page, and then select "ESE MCAS Reports-2011 Preliminary" from the menu on the left.
Superintendents and charter school leaders with the security role "Accountability (District Level)" may access all 2011 accountability data for their district. Principals with the security role "Accountability (School Level)" may access all 2011 accountability data for their school. Individuals with these security roles will see a new item named "Preview of 2011 Accountability Data" listed with the other applications to which they have access in the Security Portal.
Each district's Directory Administrator is responsible for assigning security roles to appropriate district staff. If you need assistance accessing data in the Security Portal, please speak with the Directory Administrator in your district. A list of Directory Administrators by district is available at www.doe.mass.edu/infoservices/data/diradmin/list.aspx. If, after speaking with your Directory Administrator, you still have questions regarding access to these data, please call 781-338-DATA (3282) between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.
Education Data Warehouse (EDW) Reports
Later this summer, the Department will launch new versions of key MCAS data warehouse reports. These redesigned MCAS reports are part of a larger system redesign that includes new hardware, software, and database versions. This new implementation of MCAS reports will be accessible via a separate link on the Security Portal. The existing data warehouse will continue to run in parallel. We hope to make the new MCAS reports available for the August release of preliminary results, followed by the gradual migration of all other EDW state reports, including SIMS and SCS reports, to the new system.
The Department is also working to replace the EDW database server with a new high performance database engine. We will be finalizing the timeline for this in the coming weeks.
MCAS and Accountability Reporting Teleconferences
To assist you in your MCAS and accountability discrepancy reporting, the Department will hold teleconferences on August 8 from 2:30-3:15 p.m. and on August 9 from 10:00-10:45 a.m. Participants can dial in toll-free to a presentation offering direction and advice for reviewing preliminary results; a question and answer session will follow. Registration for the teleconferences will take place between July 25 and August 4 at www.mcasservicecenter.com/. Select "MCAS," then select "Registration for Training" to locate the registration link for the conference call.
Please contact the appropriate office listed below if you have questions.
|Accessing MCAS data files or the discrepancy reporting tool||MCAS Service Center|
|Running reports in the EDW||Education Data Warehouse|
|Policies regarding the reporting of MCAS results||Student Assessment Services|
|Reporting accountability discrepancies and policies regarding the reporting of accountability results||School Improvement Grant Programs|