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H.B. 334 Enrolled

             1     

WRITING ASSESSMENT AND INSTRUCTION

             2     
2009 GENERAL SESSION

             3     
STATE OF UTAH

             4     
Chief Sponsor: Merlynn T. Newbold

             5     
Senate Sponsor: Howard A. Stephenson

             6     
             7      LONG TITLE
             8      General Description:
             9          This bill modifies requirements for statewide writing assessments.
             10      Highlighted Provisions:
             11          This bill:
             12          .    modifies the Utah Performance Assessment System for Students by requiring
             13      online writing assessments in grades 5 and 8;
             14          .    encourages a school district or charter school, as applicable, to administer an online
             15      writing assessment to students in grade 11;
             16          .    allows the State Board of Education to award a grant to a school district or charter
             17      school for an online writing assessment and instruction program that may be used
             18      to assess the writing of students in grade 11; and
             19          .    makes technical amendments.
             20      Monies Appropriated in this Bill:
             21          None
             22      Other Special Clauses:
             23          This bill takes effect on July 1, 2009.
             24      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             25      AMENDS:
             26          53A-1-602, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2007, Chapter 244
             27          53A-1-603, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2008, Second Special Session, Chapter 6
             28          53A-1-604, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2000, Chapter 219
             29          53A-1-605, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2003, Chapter 221


             30          53A-3-602.5, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2007, Chapters 112 and 244
             31     
             32      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             33          Section 1. Section 53A-1-602 is amended to read:
             34           53A-1-602. Definitions.
             35          As used in this part:
             36          (1) (a) "Achievement test" means a standardized test which measures or attempts to
             37      measure the level of performance which a student has attained in one or more courses of study.
             38          (b) "Achievement [tests shall include] test" includes a norm-referenced [and] or
             39      criterion-referenced [tests] test.
             40          (2) "Basic skills course" means a subject which requires mastery of specific functions,
             41      as defined under rules made by the State Board of Education, to include reading, language
             42      arts, mathematics through intermediate algebra, science, in grades 4 through 12, and
             43      effectiveness of written expression.
             44          (3) "Utah Performance Assessment System for Students" or "U-PASS" means:
             45          (a) systematic norm-referenced achievement testing of all students in grades 3, 5, and
             46      8 required by this part in all schools within each school district by means of tests designated
             47      by the State Board of Education;
             48          (b) criterion-referenced achievement testing of students in grades 2 through 12 in
             49      basic skills courses;
             50          (c) [a direct] an online writing assessment in grades [6] 5 and [9] 8;
             51          (d) a tenth grade basic skills competency test as detailed in Section 53A-1-611 ;
             52          (e) the use of student behavior indicators in assessing student performance; and
             53          (f) beginning with the 2007-08 school year, testing of students in grade 3 to measure
             54      reading grade level.
             55          Section 2. Section 53A-1-603 is amended to read:
             56           53A-1-603. Duties of State Board of Education.
             57          (1) Except as provided in Subsection (5), the State Board of Education shall:


             58          (a) require each school district and charter school to implement the Utah Performance
             59      Assessment System for Students, hereafter referred to as U-PASS;
             60          (b) require the state superintendent of public instruction to submit and recommend
             61      criterion-referenced and norm-referenced achievement tests, a tenth grade basic skills
             62      competency test, [a direct] an online writing assessment for grades [6] 5 and [9] 8, and a test
             63      for students in grade 3 to measure reading grade level to the board for approval and adoption
             64      and distribution to each school district and charter school by the state superintendent;
             65          (c) develop an assessment method to uniformly measure statewide performance,
             66      school district performance, and school performance of students in grades 2 through 12 in
             67      mastering basic skills courses; and
             68          (d) provide for the state to participate in the National Assessment of Educational
             69      Progress state-by-state comparison testing program.
             70          (2) Except as provided in Subsection (5), under U-PASS, the state office shall
             71      annually require that each district and charter school, as applicable, administer:
             72          (a) a statewide norm-referenced test to all students in grades 3, 5, and 8;
             73          (b) statewide criterion-referenced tests in grades 2 through 12 and courses in basic
             74      skill areas of the core curriculum;
             75          (c) [a direct] an online writing assessment to all students in grades [6] 5 and [9] 8;
             76          (d) a tenth grade basic skills competency test as detailed in Section 53A-1-611 ; and
             77          (e) a test to all students in grade 3 to measure reading grade level.
             78          (3) The board shall adopt rules for the conduct and administration of U-PASS to
             79      include the following:
             80          (a) the computation of student performance based on information that is disaggregated
             81      with respect to race, ethnicity, gender, limited English proficiency, and those students who
             82      qualify for free or reduced price school lunch;
             83          (b) security features to maintain the integrity of the system, which could include
             84      statewide uniform testing dates, multiple test forms, and test administration protocols;
             85          (c) the exemption of student test scores, by exemption category, such as limited


             86      English proficiency, mobility, and students with disabilities, with the percent or number of
             87      student test scores exempted being publically reported at a district level;
             88          (d) compiling of criterion-referenced and [direct] online writing test scores and test
             89      score averages at the classroom level to allow for:
             90          (i) an annual review of those scores by parents of students and professional and other
             91      appropriate staff at the classroom level at the earliest point in time;
             92          (ii) the assessment of year-to-year student progress in specific classes, courses, and
             93      subjects;
             94          (iii) a teacher to review, prior to the beginning of a new school year, test scores from
             95      the previous school year of students who have been assigned to the teacher's class for the new
             96      school year; and
             97          (iv) allowing a school district or charter school to have its tests administered and
             98      scored electronically to accelerate the review of test scores and their usefulness to parents and
             99      educators under Subsections (3)(d)(i), (ii), and (iii), without violating the integrity of U-PASS;
             100      and
             101          (e) providing that:
             102          (i) scores on the tests and assessments required under Subsection (2)(b) shall be
             103      considered in determining a student's academic grade for the appropriate course and whether a
             104      student shall advance to the next grade level; and
             105          (ii) the student's score on the tenth grade basic skills competency test shall be recorded
             106      on the student's transcript of credits.
             107          (4) The State Board of Education shall consider administering the basic skills
             108      competency test on a Saturday to preserve instructional time.
             109          (5) (a) The State Board of Education may exempt a school district or charter school
             110      from the testing requirements specified in Subsection (2) if the school district or charter school
             111      pilots an assessment system that incorporates:
             112          (i) online classroom-based assessment that utilizes adaptive testing in all grades;
             113          (ii) online writing assessments in grades 4 through 12; and


             114          (iii) assessments administered in grades 8, 10, and 11 to determine readiness for
             115      postsecondary education.
             116          (b) A school district or charter school that receives an exemption under Subsection
             117      (5)(a) is subject to an accountability plan and high school graduation standards that are:
             118          (i) based on the assessment system described in Subsections (5)(a)(i) through (iii); and
             119          (ii) developed and adopted by the State Board of Education.
             120          (c) By the November 2009 meeting of the Education Interim Committee, the State
             121      Board of Education shall submit recommendations to the committee on the state's assessment
             122      system.
             123          (d) The State Board of Education may only provide the following exemptions under
             124      this Subsection (5):
             125          (i) up to three rural school districts;
             126          (ii) up to two urban school districts; and
             127          (iii) up to five charter schools.
             128          (6) (a) A school district or charter school, as applicable, is encouraged to administer
             129      an online writing assessment to students in grade 11.
             130          (b) The State Board of Education may award a grant to a school district or charter
             131      school to pay for an online writing assessment and instruction program that may be used to
             132      assess the writing of students in grade 11.
             133          Section 3. Section 53A-1-604 is amended to read:
             134           53A-1-604. Test development, publication, and administration.
             135          (1) The State Board of Education shall develop, publish, and administer
             136      criterion-referenced tests and other assessments referred to in Subsections 53A-1-603 (2)(c)
             137      and (d) of its own devising and incorporate [existing norm-referenced tests and assessment
             138      programs] a norm-referenced test into U-PASS.
             139          (2) The board may use the expert services of any persons or groups of persons in the
             140      public or private sector in evaluating current tests and assessment programs, in developing,
             141      publishing, and administering new tests, or both.


             142          [(3) The board shall develop assessment tools in such a manner and on such a timeline
             143      as to ensure full implementation of U-PASS by the 2004-05 school year.]
             144          Section 4. Section 53A-1-605 is amended to read:
             145           53A-1-605. Analysis of results -- Submission of annual budget -- Staff
             146      professional development.
             147          (1) The State Board of Education, through the state superintendent of public
             148      instruction, shall develop a plan to analyze the results of the U-PASS scores for all grade levels
             149      and courses required under Section 53A-1-603 and the student behavior indicators referred to
             150      in Subsection 53A-1-602 (3)[(e)].
             151          (2) The plan shall include components designed to:
             152          (a) assist school districts and individual schools to use the results of the analysis in
             153      planning, evaluating, and enhancing programs within the district; and
             154          (b) for the 2003-04 school year and for each year thereafter, identify schools not
             155      achieving state-established acceptable levels of student performance in order to assist those
             156      schools in raising their student performance levels.
             157          (3) The plan shall include provisions for statistical reporting of data as follows:
             158          (a) norm-referenced tests results shall be reported at the state, district, school, and
             159      grade levels, and shall include actual levels of performance on tests; and
             160          (b) criterion-referenced tests results shall be reported at state, district, school, and
             161      grade or course levels, and shall include actual levels of performance on tests.
             162          (4) Each local school board shall provide for:
             163          (a) district evaluation of the U-PASS test results and use of the evaluations in setting
             164      goals and establishing programs for the district and each school within the district; and
             165          (b) a professional development program that provides teachers, principals, and other
             166      professional staff employed by the school district with the training required to successfully
             167      establish and maintain U-PASS.
             168          Section 5. Section 53A-3-602.5 is amended to read:
             169           53A-3-602.5. School performance report -- Components -- Annual filing.


             170          (1) The State Board of Education in collaboration with the state's school districts and
             171      charter schools shall develop a school performance report to inform the state's residents of the
             172      quality of schools and the educational achievement of students in the state's public education
             173      system.
             174          (2) The report shall be written and include the following statistical data for each
             175      school in each school district and each charter school, as applicable, and shall also aggregate
             176      the data at the district and state level:
             177          (a) except as provided in Subsection (2)(a)(ii), test scores over the previous year on:
             178          (i) norm-referenced achievement tests;
             179          (ii) criterion-referenced tests to include the scores aggregated for all students by grade
             180      level or course for the previous two years and an indication of whether there was a sufficient
             181      magnitude of gain in the scores between the two years;
             182          (iii) online writing assessments required under Section 53A-1-603 ; and
             183          (iv) tenth grade basic skills competency tests required under Section 53A-1-603 ;
             184          (b) college entrance examinations data, including the number and percentage of each
             185      graduating class taking the examinations for the previous four years;
             186          (c) advanced placement and concurrent enrollment data, including:
             187          (i) the number of students taking advanced placement and concurrent enrollment
             188      courses;
             189          (ii) the number and percent of students taking a specific advanced placement course
             190      who take advanced placement tests to receive college credit for the course;
             191          (iii) of those students taking the test referred to in Subsection (2)(c)(ii), the number
             192      and percent who pass the test; and
             193          (iv) of those students taking a concurrent enrollment course, the number and percent
             194      of those who receive college credit for the course;
             195          (d) the number and percent of students in grade 3 reading at or above grade level;
             196          (e) the number and percent of students who were absent from school ten days or more
             197      during the school year;


             198          (f) achievement gaps that reflect the differences in achievement of various student
             199      groups as defined by State Board of Education rule;
             200          (g) the number and percent of "student dropouts" within the district as defined by
             201      State Board of Education rule;
             202          (h) course-taking patterns and trends in secondary schools;
             203          (i) student mobility;
             204          (j) staff qualifications, to include years of professional service and the number and
             205      percent of staff who have a degree or endorsement in their assigned teaching area and the
             206      number and percent of staff who have a graduate degree;
             207          (k) the number and percent of parents who participate in SEP, SEOP, and
             208      parent-teacher conferences;
             209          (l) average class size by grade level and subject;
             210          (m) average daily attendance as defined by State Board of Education rule, including
             211      every period in secondary schools; and
             212          (n) enrollment totals disaggregated with respect to race, ethnicity, gender, limited
             213      English proficiency, and those students who qualify for free or reduced price school lunch.
             214          (3) The State Board of Education, in collaboration with the state's school districts and
             215      charter schools, shall provide for the collection and electronic reporting of the following data
             216      for each school in each school district and each charter school:
             217          (a) test scores and trends over the previous four years on the tests referred to in
             218      Subsection (2)(a);
             219          (b) the average grade given in each math, science, and English course in grades 9
             220      through 12 for which criteria-referenced tests are required under Section 53A-1-603 ;
             221          (c) incidents of student discipline as defined by State Board of Education rule,
             222      including suspensions, expulsions, and court referrals; and
             223          (d) the number and percent of students receiving fee waivers and the total dollar
             224      amount of fees waived.
             225          (4) (a) (i) The State Board of Education shall adopt common definitions and data


             226      collection procedures for local school boards and charter schools to use in collecting and
             227      forwarding the data required under Subsections (2) and (3) to the state superintendent of
             228      public instruction.
             229          (ii) Average class size by grade and subject shall be calculated for the purposes of
             230      Subsection (2)(l) in accordance with the following:
             231          (A) for kindergarten through grade six, average class size by grade shall be calculated
             232      by dividing grade membership on October 1 by the number of classes in the corresponding
             233      grade; and
             234          (B) for grades seven through twelve, average class size shall be calculated for core
             235      language arts, mathematics, and science courses by dividing membership on October 1 in core
             236      language arts, mathematics, or science course classes by the number of classes for the
             237      corresponding course.
             238          (b) The state board, through the state superintendent of public instruction, shall adopt
             239      standard reporting forms and provide a common template for collecting and reporting the data,
             240      which shall be used by all school districts and charter schools.
             241          (c) The state superintendent shall use the automated decision support system referred
             242      to in Section 53A-1-301 to collect and report the data required under Subsections (2) and (3).
             243          (5) The state board, through the state superintendent of public instruction, shall issue
             244      its report annually by October 1 to include the required data from the previous school year or
             245      years as indicated in Subsections (2) and (3).
             246          (6) (a) Each local school board and each charter school shall receive a written or an
             247      electronic copy of the report from the state superintendent of public instruction containing the
             248      data for that school district or charter school in a clear summary format and have it distributed,
             249      on a one per household basis, to the residence of students enrolled in the school district before
             250      November 30th of each year.
             251          (b) Each local school board, each charter school, and the state board shall have a
             252      complete report of the statewide data available for copying or in an electronic format at their
             253      respective offices.


             254          Section 6. Effective date.
             255          This bill takes effect on July 1, 2009.


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