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2008 CAHSEE Test Variation Regs Change Letter

Letter Head: Jack O'Connell, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Phone number 916-319-0800

February 27, 2008

Dear County and School District Superintendents, Charter School Administrators, SELPA Directors, District CAHSEE Coordinators, and High School Principals:
CHANGE IN TEST VARIATION REGULATIONS FOR THE CALIFORNIA HIGH SCHOOL EXIT EXAM (CAHSEE)

Beginning with the March 2008 administration of the CAHSEE, any proposed test variation, including but not limited to accommodation or modification not listed in California Code of Regulations, Title 5 (5 CCR) sections 1215, 1215.5, or 1216 must be approved 30 days in advance of the test by the California Department of Education (CDE). This is a change from the former regulation which allowed but did not require approval of such test variations. A test variation is defined in the 5 CCR as "a change in the manner in which a test is presented or administered, or in how a test taker is allowed to respond, and includes, but is not limited to, accommodations and modifications as defined in Education Code Section 60850."

5 CCR Section 1218 has been amended to state that:   (a) The school district must file a request with the CDE for review and approval of proposed examination variations that are not specified in sections 1215, 1215.5,or 1216. Requests must be received by the CDE at least 30 working days in advance of the proposed administration of the examination. (Emphasis added.)

Requests for approval of test variations must include:

  1. A description of the variation(s).
  2. If applicable, a certification that the pupil’s or adult student’s IEP or Section 504 plan specifies that the requested variation is appropriate and necessary to access the examination due to the pupil’s or adult student’s identified disability(ies) and that such variation is currently listed in the pupil’s or adult student’s IEP or Section 504 plan.

After reviewing the request, the CDE’s panel of experts, including mathematics and English-language arts consultants, and a special education consultant from the CDE, will issue a decision within 15 working days of receipt of the request for the proposed variation (5 CCR Section 1218(d)).

Attached is the Request for Test Variation Form that must be used for this process.

Remember:  This process is only for test variations not included in the 5 CCR sections 1215, 1215.5, and 1216. If you have any questions, or if you are unsure as to whether you need to submit the request form, call the CAHSEE Office at 916-445-9449 or e-mail us at CAHSEE@cde.ca.gov.

Sincerely,

/s/

Deb Sigman, Director
Standards and Assessment Division

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