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Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System

Student Assessment Update: May 6, 2013

ACCESS for ELLs Reporting

The Department will present three 2-hour webinar workshops on interpreting and using the WIDA score reports on:

  • May 23 at 9:00 a.m.
  • May 28 at 1:00 p.m.
  • May 29 at 9:00 a.m.

Registration information is posted at

Print copies of ACCESS for ELLs test results will be mailed to schools on May 16 and should arrive by May 22. Results will also be posted to the Security Portal at

Additional information about ACCESS for ELLs 2013 reporting, including parent letters and translated Parent/Guardian Reports, has been posted at

June High School Science and Technology/Engineering Administration Will Affect Adams Scholarship Eligibility for Some Students in Grade 9

Beginning with the class of 2016, a student's score on a high school Science and Technology/Engineering (STE) MCAS test will be added to the eligibility criteria for the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship. Therefore, the score for a grade 9 student who takes a high school STE MCAS test in 2013 will count toward his or her scholarship eligibility.

The Department recommends that schools notify grade 9 students and their parents or guardians in writing about this new criterion if grade 9 students at the school will be participating in the June STE MCAS testing. Please refer to the Department's website at for more information about the Adams Scholarship, and to the Principal's Administration Manual ( for detailed participation guidelines (beginning on page 11).

PARCC Test Specifications:

Last week, the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) released a set of test specification documents to help educators and the public better understand the design of the new PARCC English language arts/literacy and mathematics assessments. The documents include blueprints and evidence statement tables. Blueprints describe the content and structure of an assessment by defining the total number of tasks and/or items for any given test component, the standards measured, the item types, and the point values for each. Evidence statement tables describe the knowledge and skills that a test item or a task is measuring. To view the newly released test specifications, go to

Important Upcoming Dates

  • May 6-21: Mathematics test sessions for grades 3-8
  • May 7-21: Science and Technology/Engineering test sessions for grades 5 and 8
  • May 13 and 14: Mathematics test sessions for grade 10
  • June 4 and 5: High school STE (Biology, Chemistry, Introductory Physics, Technology/Engineering) test sessions

About this Update

The Student Assessment Services Update provides important information about the state's testing programs. Please email your feedback to

Principals, heads of school, MCAS test coordinators, and ELL directors received this email based on contact information that was submitted to the Department. To change your email address, please follow the instructions below:

  • Public schools: Submit updates to your District-Level Directory Administrator, who is responsible for submitting updates to the Department. A listing of Directory Administrators is posted at
  • Non-public schools and collaboratives: Submit updates (along with your District & School Code) to the Department via email at

Last Updated: May 8, 2013
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