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Early Childhood

Scores For Thought

By Monica Schnee

I t is time again to send the ACCESS Parent Report to our students’ parents who are anxious to know if their child is eligible to exit ESL, no matter how many times we have stressed that it is only one of many multiple exit criteria. But have you taken the time to look at the scores to see if they truly reflect what your students were able to do last March? Have you made sure that they are accurate even though the window for making changes is already closed?

Last year I wrote an article about the number of inaccurate scores that my kindergarten students had received. I also stressed how helpful Metritech and the Department of Education were in working with me to rectify those scores.

This year, having learned from prior experience, my district agreed to pay me to come in [to work] within the window for correction. Again, I carefully studied the scores, domain by domain, scale by scale, and  found a smaller number of scores that surprised me. A few of my students had become “secure writers” by March and their writing scores seemed too low based on my expectations and knowledge of them.

I immediately got on the phone with Metritech and they once again agreed to look into the scores. They pulled out those booklets that I had concerns about and were incredibly helpful in providing services as well as guidance. They were fast in sending back the corrected reports and in reporting the new scores to the Department of Education. Yes, these students had actually scored much higher, so much so, that their scores were 4.5 or higher.

As I reflect on the experience and its implications, here are a few points to consider:

Monica Schnee is the Bilingual/ESL Early Childhood / Pre-K - K Representative

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