Your Child's IEP and State Testing

Spring is around the corner and that means it is time soon for state testing. Does your child's IEP accommodations — like- testing in an alternative area, frequent breaks, reading text aloud, allowing for verbal responses, etc. — translate into accommodations for state testing? If not, then this article will further discuss how to make sure your child's IEP reflects their accommodations for state testing. 

Before I get into the nitty-gritty, it is important to remember we do not want to add accommodations that the child currently does not receive.  If the child does not have passages read out loud to him as an accommodation that is not something we would add to just add on to state testing. It is important to note that the state testing accommodations are reflective of the current accommodations the child is receiving. 

There is an actual section in the IEP called Statewide Assessments. This page will indicate what accommodations your child will receive in ELA, Math, Science, and PE.  Many times I have found errors on this page because it will be checked with accommodations but nothing is listed!  We want to make sure the actual accommodations are listed in each section.


The majority of assessments are conducted electronically, allowing for many accommodations to be seamlessly integrated into the computer format. However, some accommodations are non-embedded, requiring external implementation support. For example, taking tests in a small setting is a non-embedded accommodation. Another example is having access to a calculator or multiplication chart. Make sure each section like ELA, Math, Science, and PE has each accommodation listed to what the child needs. 

Usually, there is an alternative state test but this option is for children with significant learning impairment. There is a very specific requirement and usually only about 1% of students qualify for the alternative testing. 

With that said, parents also have a right to opt out of state testing for their child. Some find that it is too emotionally draining and it will cause more negative harm than positive. Just as with anything, state testing is a measure of progress so by not having your child taking the assessments the IEP loses additional data to measure your child's growth. 

Many times parents ask if this impacts them for entry into college and the answer is no. This is just state data that is used to measure the growth of a school, child, district, and state. Take this time to check your child's IEP. You want to review the Services page which lists their current accommodations and compare that to the Statewide Assessment page. You then can check each subject like ELA, Math, and Science to see if it has been checked and is aligned to their current accommodations. If it is not, contact your child's case manager immediately stating you want an amendment to fix the error. Also, consider if taking the state test is the most beneficial option for your child. 


Author: Adrienne Oliveira, Special Education Teacher

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Disclaimer: The information provided in this blog is for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as professional advice. The content is based on the author's personal experiences, research, and opinions. It is always recommended to consult with a qualified professional or expert before making any decisions or taking action based on the information provided in this blog.

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