WSR 07-03-131

PROPOSED RULES

SUPERINTENDENT OF

PUBLIC INSTRUCTION

[ Filed January 23, 2007, 10:37 a.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 06-22-107.

Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: Alternative assessment and waiver/appeal guidelines for certificates of academic and individual achievement, these rules create a new chapter in TITLE 392 WAC that includes the guidelines, eligibility criteria, procedures, and other information needed to:

(1) Utilize the objective alternative assessments authorized in RCW 28A.655.065 and 28A.655.061;

(2) Apply for waivers for transfer students of the certificate of academic achievement (CAA) and the certificate of individual achievement (CIA); and

(3) Apply for appeals of the CAA and CIA requirements for students with special, unavoidable circumstances.

Hearing Location(s): Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, Brouillet Conference Room, 600 South Washington Street, Olympia, WA 98504, on February 27, 2007, at 1:30 p.m.

Date of Intended Adoption: March 6, 2007.

Submit Written Comments to: Bob Butts, P.O. Box 47200, Olympia, WA 98504-7200, e-mail Bob.Butts@k12.wa.us, fax (360) 725-6332, by February 27, 2007.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Clarice Nnanabu by February 27, 2006, fax (360) 664-0567 or (360) 725-6270.

Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: The purposes of these rules are to:

(1) Develop and implement eligibility requirements and guidelines for objective alternative assessments for students to demonstrate achievement of state standards in content areas in which the student has not yet met the standard on the high school Washington assessment of student learning (WASL); and

(2) Develop guidelines and appeal processes for waiving specific requirements in RCW 28A.655.061 pertaining to the certificate of academic achievement and to the certificate of individual achievement for students who:

(a) Transfer to a Washington public school in their junior or senior year with the intent of obtaining a public high school diploma; and

(b) Have special, unavoidable circumstances.

The effect of these rules will be to provide students in the class of 2008 and beyond additional options for meeting the high school graduation requirements.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 28A.655.065, 28A.655.061.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Name of Proponent: [Superintendent of public instruction], governmental.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Bob Butts, 3rd Floor, Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, (360) 725-4971; Implementation: Lesley Klenk, 2nd Floor, Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, (360) 725-6330; and Enforcement: Dr. Terry Bergeson, 2nd Floor, Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, (360) 725-6004.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW.

A cost-benefit analysis is not required under RCW 34.05.328.

January 23, 2007

Dr. Terry Bergeson

Superintendent of

Public Instruction

OTS-9517.1

Chapter 392-501 WAC

ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT, ACCOUNTABILITY AND ASSESSMENT


NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-001   Authority.   The authority for this chapter is RCW 28A.655.065 and 28A.655.061 which directs the superintendent of public instruction to:

(1) Develop and implement eligibility requirements and guidelines for objective alternative assessments for students to demonstrate achievement of state standards in content areas in which the student has not yet met the standard on the high school Washington assessment of student learning (WASL); and

(2) Develop guidelines and appeal processes for waiving specific requirements in RCW 28A.655.061 pertaining to the certificate of academic achievement and to the certificate of individual achievement for students who:

(a) Transfer to a Washington public school in their junior or senior year with the intent of obtaining a public high school diploma; and

(b) Have special, unavoidable circumstances.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-002   Purpose.   The purpose of this chapter is to provide the guidelines, eligibility criteria, procedures, and other information needed to:

(1) Utilize the objective alternative assessments authorized in RCW 28A.655.065 and 28A.655.061;

(2) Apply for waivers for transfer students; and

(3) Apply for appeals for students with special, unavoidable circumstances.

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PSAT, SAT AND ACT MATHEMATICS COMPARISON OPTION
NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-102   General description.   The PSAT, SAT and ACT mathematics comparison option is an objective alternative assessment authorized in RCW 28A.665.061 (10)(b) which allows a student to use a score from the mathematics component of the PSAT, SAT, or ACT to demonstrate that the student has met or exceeded the state standard for mathematics.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-103   Eligibility.   (1) A student is eligible for the PSAT, SAT and ACT mathematics comparison alternative assessment if:

(a) The student has taken the mathematics Washington assessment of student learning (WASL) at least twice and has not met the mathematics standard. To meet this criterion, a student must have sat for and generated a scale score during both administrations of the WASL; and

(b) The student has met or exceeded one or more of the minimum scores on the mathematics components of the following tests:

PSAT - Mathematics: 47

SAT - Mathematics: 470

ACT - Mathematics: 19

(2) Students may use a score earned prior to or after taking the WASL twice.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-104   Application process.   (1) The superintendent of public instruction shall develop and make available to students and school district personnel a PSAT, SAT, and ACT mathematics comparison application for documenting that a student has met the eligibility requirements in WAC 392-501-003.

(2) If the student is eligible, the student shall complete an application and submit the application to the school principal or designee.

(3) If the school principal or designee agrees that the eligibility criteria have been met, the principal or designee shall transmit a facsimile or mail a copy of the application and the copy of the student's official PSAT, SAT, or ACT score report that was sent to the school to the office of superintendent of public instruction (OSPI).

(4) Once verified, OSPI staff will notify the student, the school principal or designee, and the school district assessment coordinator that the form has been received and verified. OSPI staff will then document in the student's state assessment record that the student met the high school mathematics standard.

(5) The superintendent of public instruction shall act upon the student's application and notify the student, the student's school principal or designee, and the school district assessment coordinator whether the application was approved or denied within thirty days of receiving the application.

(6) A copy of the application and the student's score report shall be included in the student's cumulative folder.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-105   Notification requirements.   The school principal or a designee shall notify students in their junior and senior years of the availability of the PSAT, SAT and ACT mathematics comparison.

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WASL/GRADES COMPARISON OPTION
NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-200   General description.   The WASL/grades comparison option is an objective alternative assessment authorized in RCW 28A.655.065 (3) and (4) which compares a combination of the applicant's grades in applicable courses and the applicant's highest score on the high school WASL.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-201   Eligibility.   A student is eligible for the WASL/grades comparison option if the student meets the following conditions:

(1) The student has retaken the WASL at least once in the content area for which the student is applying to use the WASL/grades comparison option. To meet this criterion, a student must make a genuine attempt to take the WASL, which means the student sat for and generated a valid scale score during both administrations of the WASL.

(2) The student has met any applicable attendance and remediation or supplemental instruction requirements contained in the student's student learning plan developed under RCW 28A.655.061. The principal of the student's school may waive the attendance and/or remediation criteria for special, unavoidable circumstances.

(3) The student has met, or is on track to meet, all other state and local graduation requirements, as determined by the school district.

(4) The student, during at least one of the test sittings, has achieved a score on the WASL in one of the following ranges:

(a) Mathematics: 375 - 399

(b) Reading: 375 - 399

(c) Writing: 13 - 16

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-202   Process for determining the comparison cohort and calculating the GPAs.   (1) For the purpose of this section, "applicant" means an eligible student seeking to use the WASL/grades comparison option.

(2) A school district representative or designee shall determine the comparison cohort and complete the calculation in this subsection for all eligible students.

(3) To complete the WASL/grades comparison option, the school district representative or designee shall complete the following steps:

(a) Identify the group of students in the same school as the applicant who took the same mathematics or English high school courses, which ever is applicable, in the same school year as the applicant. This group includes all of the students in the school who took courses with the same course title and course number (e.g., Algebra 1, Sophomore English) as the applicant, in the same semester/trimester, in the same school year, regardless of the grade level of the student. When selecting courses to be used, the following guidelines shall be followed:

(i) The total number of courses must be the equivalent of two annual high school credits and must include the highest level courses taken.

(ii) In order for applicants using the cohort comparison to meet the mathematics standard, the courses must be eligible for a mathematics graduation credit.

(iii) In order for applicants using the cohort comparison to meet the reading or writing standard, the courses must be eligible for an English/Language Arts graduation credit.

(b) From the group of students identified in (a) of this subsection, the school district representative or designee shall identify the "comparison cohort," which includes all students who met or slightly exceeded the state standard on the WASL. For purposes of determining "who met or slightly exceeded the state standard," scores in Level 3 shall be used:

(i) Mathematics - 400 - 433;

(ii) Reading - 400 - 426; and

(iii) Writing - 17 - 20.

(c) If there are fewer than six students in the comparison cohort, the applicant is not eligible to use the WASL/grades comparison option.

(d) The school district representative or designee shall compute the grade point average for the applicant and for each student in the comparison cohort, using grade point calculation rules provided in WAC 392-415-050 and 392-415-055 for the relevant high school courses.

(e) The school district representative or designee shall calculate the arithmetic mean grade point average of the comparison cohort.

(f) The school district representative or designee shall then compare the applicant's grade point average in the relevant high school courses to the mean grade point average for the same courses of the students in the comparison cohort.

(g) If the applicant's grade point average is below the mean grade point average of the comparison cohort, the student is not eligible to file the application and no further action is required.

(h) If the applicant's mean grade point average is equal to or above the mean grade point average of the comparison cohort, the principal shall transmit the application with the results of the calculation to the office of the superintendent of public instruction for approval.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-203   Application timeline and approval criteria.   (1) Applications may be submitted to the superintendent of public instruction after the completion of the applicant's junior year.

(2) The superintendent of public instruction shall approve the application if:

(a) The student eligibility requirements are met;

(b) The process for identifying the comparison cohort and for calculating the grade point averages and the mean grade point average was followed; and

(c) The applicant's grade point average is equal to or above the mean grade point average of the comparison cohort.

(3) If the application is approved, the applicant will be deemed to have met the applicable content standard for purposes of obtaining a certificate of academic achievement.

(4) The superintendent of public instruction must act upon the student's application and notify the applicant, the applicant's school principal or designee, and the school district assessment coordinator whether the application was approved or denied within thirty days of receiving the application.

(5) A copy of the application shall be included in the student's cumulative folder.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-204   Notification requirements.   The school principal or a designee shall notify students in their junior and senior years of the availability of the WASL/grades comparison option.

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WAIVERS FOR STUDENTS WHO TRANSFER INTO A WASHINGTON PUBLIC SCHOOL
NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-500   General description.   RCW 28A.655.065 directs the superintendent of public instruction to develop guidelines and appeal processes for waiving specific requirements pertaining to the certificate of academic achievement and to the certificate of individual achievement for students who transfer to a Washington public school in their junior or senior year with the intent of obtaining a public high school diploma.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-501   Waivers for transfer students from other states who enroll in their junior or senior year.   (1) The requirement that a student obtain a certificate of academic achievement or a certificate of individual achievement to graduate shall be waived for students who transfer to a Washington public school from another state in their junior or senior year if the student provides documentation that he or she has met standards in another state on a high school assessment or for students eligible to receive special education services, on an alternate assessment. The assessment in the other state must be approved by the federal government in accordance with provisions of the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Waivers shall be granted as follows:

(a) If the student met standards on both the mathematics and reading/English language arts assessments in the other state, the applicable certificate shall be waived.

(b) If a student met the standard on only the mathematics assessment in the other state, then the student must meet standard on both the reading and writing components of the applicable Washington assessment for the certificate to be waived.

(c) If the student met the standard on only the reading/English language arts assessment in the other state, then the student must meet the standard on the mathematics component of the applicable Washington assessment for the certificate to be waived.

(2) For purposes of this section, a "public school in another state" and an "out-of-state school" shall include public schools in territories of the United States and schools operated by the United States Department of Defense and other federal agencies that are required to administer high school assessments under the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

(3) The student must document passage of the assessment by one of the following options:

(a) The out-of-state school from which the student transferred must transmit directly to the student's school a score report from the school or school district where the student took the high school assessment or alternate assessment. The score report must contain the student's assessment results by content area and whether or not the student met the state required standards. If the out-of-state school directly transmitted the score report when the student enrolled in the Washington school system, then the student need not provide the report again; or

(b) The out-of-state school from which the student transferred must transmit directly to the student's school, if it has not done so already, the student's transcript documenting the student's assessment results. The transcript must contain the student's assessment results by content area and whether or not the student met the state required standards.

(4) To obtain a waiver, the student or the student's parent or guardian must complete and submit to the student's principal or designee a waiver application developed by the superintendent of public instruction. The principal of the school or designee shall review the information and transmit the application and a copy of the student's assessment score report or transcript to the superintendent of public instruction for approval.

(5) Applications must be received by the superintendent of public instruction by April 1 of the student's senior year to provide time for processing prior to graduation.

(6) The superintendent of public instruction must act upon the student's application and notify the student, the student's school principal or designee, and the school district assessment coordinator whether the application was approved or denied within thirty days of receiving the application.

(7) The student's transcript shall indicate that the applicable certificate was waived.

(8) A copy of the application and the student's score report or transcript shall be included in the student's cumulative folder.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-503   Notification requirements.   The principal or a designee shall inform students who transferred from another state in their junior or senior year of the availability of obtaining a waiver of the certificate requirements.

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APPEAL PROCESS FOR STUDENTS WITH SPECIAL, UNAVOIDABLE CIRCUMSTANCES
NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-600   General description.   RCW 28A.655.065 directs the superintendent of public instruction to develop guidelines and appeal processes for waiving specific requirements in RCW 28A.655.061 pertaining to the certificate of academic achievement and to the certificate of individual achievement for students who have special, unavoidable circumstances.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-601   Eligibility and application requirements.   (1) A student, or a student's parent or guardian may file an appeal to the superintendent of public instruction if the student has special, unavoidable circumstances that prevented the student, during the student's senior year, from successfully demonstrating his or her skills and knowledge on the Washington assessment of student learning (WASL), on an objective alternative assessment authorized in RCW 28A.655.065, or on a Washington alternate assessment available to students eligible for special education services. To file an appeal, the student must be in his or her senior year and have met, or be on track to meet, all other state and local graduation requirements, as determined by the school district.

(2) Special, unavoidable circumstances shall include the following:

(a) Not being able to take or complete an assessment because of:

(i) The death of a parent, guardian or sibling; or

(ii) An unexpected and severe medical condition. The condition must be documented by a medical professional and included with the application.

(b) A major irregularity in the administration of the assessment;

(c) Loss of the assessment material; or

(d) Failure to receive an accommodation during administration of the assessment that was documented in the student's individualized education program that is required in the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or in a plan required in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

(3) To file an appeal, the student must complete and submit to the principal of the student's school an appeal application on a form developed by the superintendent of public instruction. The application shall require that the following be submitted: Score reports from prior assessments taken by the student, the medical condition report, the student's transcript, and other relevant achievement information. The principal of the school shall review the application and accompanying material and certify that, to the best of his or her knowledge, the information in the application is accurate and complete.

(4) Once the principal certifies that the application and accompanying material is accurate and complete, the principal shall transmit the application to the state superintendent of public instruction.

(5) Applications must be received by the superintendent of public instruction on or before May 1 or August 1. The May 1 deadline is intended primarily for students who were not able to participate in the spring assessment, while the August deadline is intended primarily for students who decide to file an appeal after receiving their scores in June.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-602   High school graduation certificate appeals review board.   (1) The high school graduation certificate appeals review board shall be created to review and make recommendations to the superintendent of public instruction on special, unavoidable circumstance appeal applications.

(2) The superintendent of public instruction shall appoint five members to the board. The board shall be chaired by a current or former high school principal and shall consist of current or former teachers, department heads, and/or school district assessment directors with experience and expertise in the Washington essential academic learning requirements. Each member shall be appointed for a three-year term, provided that the initial terms may be staggered as the superintendent deems appropriate.

(3) The high school graduation certificate appeals review board shall review special, unavoidable circumstance appeal applications submitted to it by the superintendent of public instruction. The board shall:

(a) Review the written information submitted to the superintendent to determine whether sufficient evidence was presented that the student has the required knowledge and skills; and

(b) Make a recommendation to the superintendent, based on the criteria in subsection (6) of this section, regarding whether or not the appeal should be granted.

(4) Staff from the office of the superintendent of public instruction (OSPI) shall coordinate and assist the work of the board. In this capacity, staff from the OSPI shall prepare a preliminary analysis of each application and accompanying information that evaluates the extent in which the criteria in subsection (6) of this section have been met.

(5) If the board determines that additional information on a particular student is needed in order to fulfill its duties, the chair of the board shall contact the OSPI staff to request the information.

(6) The board shall recommend to the superintendent of public instruction that the appeal be granted if it finds that:

(a) The student, due to special, unavoidable circumstances as defined in WAC 392-501-601(2), was not able to successfully demonstrate his or her skills on the WASL, on an objective alternative assessment, or on a Washington alternate assessment available to students eligible for special education services;

(b) The district has indicated that the student has met, or is on track to meet, all other state and local graduation requirements;

(c) No other recourse or remedy exists to address the special, unavoidable circumstance prior to the student's expected graduation date; and

(d) Sufficient evidence was presented to the board demonstrating that the student has a high probability of having the skills and knowledge necessary to achieve the required standard or standards. In making this determination, the board shall consider trends in prior WASL or alternate assessment results, how near the student has been in achieving the standard, proficient scores on other assessments, participation and successful completion of remediation courses and other academic assistance opportunities, and other available information that indicates the student has the skills and knowledge measured on the WASL or on an alternate assessment, whichever is applicable.

(7) Based upon the recommendation of the high school graduation appeals board and any other information that the superintendent deems relevant, the superintendent of public instruction shall decide, based on the criteria established in subsection (6) of this section, whether to:

(a) Grant the appeal and waive the requirement that a student earn a certificate to graduate;

(b) Deny the appeal and not waive the certificate; or

(c) Remand the appeal back to the appeals board for further information or deliberation.

(8) The superintendent of public instruction shall act upon the student's application and notify the student, the student's school principal or designee, and the school district assessment coordinator whether the application was approved or denied within thirty days of the deadline for receiving the application. This deadline for acting on the application may be extended if additional information is required from the student or the school district.

(9) The student's transcript shall indicate that the applicable certificate was waived.

(10) A copy of the application and supporting information shall be included in the student's cumulative folder.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 392-501-603   Notification requirements.   The school principal or a designee shall notify students in their junior and senior years of the availability of special, unavoidable circumstance appeals.

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Washington State Code Reviser's Office