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Alternative Assessment Portfolios

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by

Tim Brewer

on 7 April 2014

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Transcript of Alternative Assessment Portfolios

This is my friend Julie. She has Downs Syndrome. Julie is one of many students that are assessed through Alternative Assessment Portfolio.
Alternative Assessment Portfolios, or just portfolios for short, are a means of assessing students with special needs that are exempt from taking the standardized benchmark exams. Students that qualify for portfolio assessment include those in self-contained, CBI classrooms and some students in resource if it indicates so in their IEP.
A Little Bit of Info
My Problem/Question
Through my experience in working in resource and CBI classrooms, I feel that portfolios do no adequately assess these students. In my honest opinion, I feel that portfolios are really grading the instructor more than the student. Portfolios are sent to the ADE and evaluated by the Special Education big wigs. Then reports are sent with the students "grades" for each content area. However, I feel that it boils down to how good these teachers can make their students look. My goal for this research project is for one, to discover if I am the only one who feels this way. And also, to find any possible alternative methods that could more properly assess and evaluate students with disabilities.
Sample Evidence Page
How Portfolios Work
Students who are assessed through the Alternative Assessment Portfolios are tested through the same Standards and Frameworks as the general population. However, the portfolio students are only assessed over a few of the standards that are selected by the special education teachers. The teacher will then show evidence that the student has successfully mastered the standard. The ADE requires three evidences per standard. There are four types of ways to present evidence: work sample, audio with script, video with script, and/or a series of captioned photos. Teachers will then gather their evidence and turn in portfolios to the ADE in March.
A true assessment of student achievement?
Alternative Assessment Portfolios:
Here is a example of a task that was in one of our students portfolios last year. I blacked out the student's name to keep confidentiality.
Here are the requirements for a student to qualify for portfolio assessment.
Full transcript