28A.655.063  <<  28A.655.065 >>   28A.655.066

RCW 28A.655.065

Objective alternative assessment methods—Appeals from assessment scores—Waivers and appeals from assessment requirements—Rules.

(1) The legislature has made a commitment to rigorous academic standards for receipt of a high school diploma. The primary way that students will demonstrate that they meet the standards in reading, writing, mathematics, and science is through the statewide student assessment. Only objective assessments that are comparable in rigor to the state assessment are authorized as an alternative assessment. Before seeking an alternative assessment, the legislature expects students to make a genuine effort to meet state standards, through regular and consistent attendance at school and participation in extended learning and other assistance programs.
(2) Under RCW 28A.655.061, beginning in the 2006-07 school year, the superintendent of public instruction shall implement objective alternative assessment methods as provided in this section for students to demonstrate achievement of the state standards in content areas in which the student has not yet met the standard on the high school statewide student assessment. A student may access an alternative if the student meets applicable eligibility criteria in RCW 28A.655.061 and this section and other eligibility criteria established by the superintendent of public instruction, including but not limited to attendance criteria and participation in the remediation or supplemental instruction contained in the student learning plan developed under RCW 28A.655.061. A school district may waive attendance and/or remediation criteria for special, unavoidable circumstances.
(3) For the purposes of this section, "applicant" means a student seeking to use one of the alternative assessment methods in this section.
(4) One alternative assessment method shall be a combination of the applicant's grades in applicable courses and the applicant's highest score on the high school statewide student assessment, as provided in this subsection. A student is eligible to apply for the alternative assessment method under this subsection (4) if the student has a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.2 on a four point grading scale. The superintendent of public instruction shall determine which high school courses are applicable to the alternative assessment method and shall issue guidelines to school districts.
(a) Using guidelines prepared by the superintendent of public instruction, a school district shall identify the group of students in the same school as the applicant who took the same high school courses as the applicant in the applicable content area. From the group of students identified in this manner, the district shall select the comparison cohort that shall be those students who met or slightly exceeded the state standard on the statewide student assessment.
(b) The district shall compare the applicant's grades in high school courses in the applicable content area to the grades of students in the comparison cohort for the same high school courses. If the applicant's grades are equal to or above the mean grades of the comparison cohort, the applicant shall be deemed to have met the state standard on the alternative assessment.
(c) An applicant may not use the alternative assessment under this subsection (4) if there are fewer than six students in the comparison cohort.
(5) The superintendent of public instruction shall implement:
(a) By June 1, 2006, a process for students to appeal the score they received on the high school assessments;
(b) By January 1, 2007, 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: (i) Transfer to a Washington public school in their junior or senior year with the intent of obtaining a public high school diploma, or (ii) have special, unavoidable circumstances;
(c)(i) For the graduating classes of 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018, an expedited appeal process for waiving specific requirements in RCW 28A.655.061 pertaining to the certificate of academic achievement and the certificate of individual achievement for eligible students who have not met the state standard on the English language arts statewide student assessment, the mathematics high school statewide student assessment, or both. The student or the student's parent, guardian, or principal may initiate an appeal with the district and the district has the authority to determine which appeals are submitted to the superintendent of public instruction for review and approval. The superintendent of public instruction may only approve an appeal if it has been demonstrated that the student has the necessary skills and knowledge to meet the high school graduation standard and that the student has the skills necessary to successfully achieve the college or career goals established in his or her high school and beyond plan. Pathways for demonstrating the necessary skills and knowledge may include, but are not limited to:
(A) Successful completion of a college level class in the relevant subject area;
(B) Admission to a higher education institution or career preparation program;
(C) Award of a scholarship for higher education; or
(D) Enlistment in a branch of the military.
(ii) A student in the class of 2014, 2015, 2016, or 2017 is eligible for the expedited appeal process in (c)(i) of this subsection if he or she has met all other graduation requirements established by the state and district.
(iii) A student in the class of 2018 is eligible for the expedited appeal process in (c)(i) of this subsection if he or she has met all other graduation requirements established by the state and district and has attempted at least one alternative assessment option as established in RCW 28A.655.065.
(6) The state board of education shall examine opportunities for additional alternative assessments, including the possible use of one or more standardized norm-referenced student achievement tests and the possible use of the reading, writing, or mathematics portions of the ACT ASSET and ACT COMPASS test instruments as objective alternative assessments for demonstrating that a student has met the state standards for the certificate of academic achievement. The state board shall submit its findings and recommendations to the education committees of the legislature by January 10, 2008.
(7) The superintendent of public instruction shall adopt rules to implement this section.
NOTES:
Effective date2017 3rd sp.s. c 31: See note following RCW 28A.655.061.
FindingsIntent2008 c 170: See RCW 28A.700.005.
FindingsIntent2007 c 354: See note following RCW 28A.655.061.
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