Topical Guides


1. Removes the IDEA’s reference to “modifications in administration” regarding the Removed references to “modifications in administration” assessment of children’s academic achievement and functional performance.
An individualized education program (IEP) must include a statement of any “appropriate accommodations that are necessary to measure the academic achievement and functional performance of the child,” rather than a statement of individual modifications in the administration of state or districtwide student assessments. [612(d)(1)(A)(VI)(aa) of IDEA]

Dialogue Starter - Cross-stakeholder

Reaction Questions

  1. IDEA 2004 does not address test modifications.
    What is the difference between “modification” and “accommodation”?

  2. How might a standardized definition of these two terms impact instruction and academic outcomes (e.g., assessment scores, AYP, IEP goal attainment)?

  3. How might universal design address concerns related to modifications and accommodations?

  4. How does the greater clarity for state guidelines on alternate assessments and the new language regarding state/district assessments, “appropriate accommodations” versus prior language “modifications” affect the administration of state/district assessments?

  5. Who should be informed of this provision and why might their involvement be important?

  6. What might have motivated the decision to omit references to modifications?

Application Questions

  1. How will this provision impact the testing administrative processes and procedures?

  2. What changes need to occur at the school and district levels to support this change

  3. What changes need to occur at the state level to support this change?

  4. How might this provision impact test scores?

  5. Which professional development activities might be necessary to inform practice?

    These questions were developed by the following stakeholders working together:

    Role: Teacher
    Location: Washington, DC

    Role: Parent
    Location: Maryland

    Role: Parent
    Location: South Carolina

    Role: Policymaker
    Location: Virginia

    Role: Service provider
    Location: Virginia