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Adult and Community Learning Services (ACLS)

BEST Plus Recertification Information Due Friday, February 28, 2014.

January 28, 2014

Dear Program Directors:

Please share this important assessment information with the BEST Plus Test Administrators on staff.

BEST Plus Recertification Information and Due Date:

First, thank you to all who have participated in assessing students this year. We know it takes time and careful attention on your part. It is so important that we continue to administer and score the standardized assessments correctly. If we are to maintain accurate scores statewide, then it is vital to make sure all administrators and scorers are following the same test protocols. A significant part of this process is ensuring that all BEST Plus test administrators are scoring strictly according to the BEST Plus rubric, and for test administrators to re-familiarize themselves with the scoring process (known as recalibration) each time before they test.

To ensure scoring accuracy, BEST Plus test administrators must recertify annually by taking part in a Scoring Refresher and successfully completing a 30-minute scoring activity. Practitioners who took an Initial Certification training for BEST Plus during FY 14, (July 1, 2013- June 30, 2014) do not need to recertify at this time. Recertification entails successfully completing Scoring Activity #3. To ensure successful completion, the BEST Plus Scoring Refresher Toolkit must be reviewed first.

Note Two Changes for FY14:

  1. BEST Plus test administrators who have scored consistently in the "recommended" area for Listening Comprehension, Language Complexity and Communication in the annual recertification for the past 3 years will only need to recertify every 3rd year instead of every year. Practitioners who benefit from this change must also continue to test at least 20 students each year to maintain their fidelity to the BEST Plus scoring rubric. The SABES Regional Curriculum and Assessment Coordinators have sent a list to program directors of those who do not need to recertify until FY16.
  2. The deadlines for submitting recertification for BEST Plus and CLAS-E Writing have changed from what they were in FY13. The new date for recertifying in BEST Plus is February 28, 2014. The deadline for recertifying in CLAS-E Writing is March 28, 2014.

In order to recertify, BEST Plus test administrators must use the following materials:

  • A 3-ring binder entitled, "BEST Plus Scoring Refresher Toolkit," with two accompanying DVDs or VHS videos (The Refresher dvd/video and the Scoring Activities dvd/video)
  • A white booklet entitled, "BEST Plus Scoring Refresher Workbook, Test Administrator's Edition" which includes the answer sheets - one for each test administrator.

If programs do not have these materials, please purchase a new Refresher Toolkit and Refresher Workbook-Test Administrator Edition from the Center for Applied Linguistics: http://calstore.cal.org/store/c-2-adult-english-language-and-literacy.aspx?pagenum=3

The completed Scoring Activity must be sent to the Program's Regional SABES Curriculum and Assessment Coordinator by Friday, February 28, 2014. The SABES Curriculum and Assessment Coordinator will score and notify practitioners of their status by Friday, March 28. Those passing the scoring activity will have their name and certification status entered into the SMARTT Professional Development database. (Please note: test administrators will not receive a certificate, so they should print out the email indicating their certification status to give to their program director and retain a copy for their own records.) The new certificate will be valid for at least one year. For further details about the recertification criteria, please refer to the BEST Plus Assessment Policy Manual, page 6, found at http://www.doe.mass.edu/acls/assessment/, under the section "Policy." Test Administrators who do not return their Scoring Activity by this date will not be able to administer the BEST Plus until they re-take the initial BEST Plus training, refresher, and scoring activity.

If you have any questions or concerns about BEST Plus, please feel free to contact Jane Schwerdtfeger at janes@doe.mass.edu.

Thank you for your continued hard work.

Jolanta Conway
Acting ABE State Director
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education



Last Updated: January 28, 2014
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