State Testing Window Announced

Ken McLemore

HOPE – The Arkansas Department of Education has announced the official testing administration window for the ACT Aspire federally-mandated student assessment for 2021.

Hope Public Schools Federal Programs Coordinator Portia Jones said the assessment will be required this year and will be administered under CDC protocols for COVID-19.

“The Division of Elementary and Secondary Education recommended that all schools start testing the first week of the window, April 5 through May 7 of 2021,” Jones said. “Due to planning for testing during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have not completed specific ACT Aspire schedules at this time.”

Because the ACT Aspire administration will require all students to attend on campus during testing, Jones said the HPS has planned to address specific student responsibilities during testing.

“Arkansas does not participate in an opt-out for ACT Aspire in grades three through ten or K-two state assessments,” Jones said. “All virtual students must test on-site in appropriate cohorts; and campus testing coordinators will notify parents of dates and time.”

However, certain accommodations are available for students with medical needs.

“Students deemed by a physician as ‘medically fragile’ must submit documentation from the physician to the District Testing Coordinator, my office; or, to the School Testing Coordinator for the student’s campus,” Jones said.

STCs for the district include Shauntelle Jarvis and Paige Bobo at Clinton Primary School; Christi Sullivan at Beryl Henry Elementary School; Joyce Smith at Yerger Middle School; Marilyn Marks at Hope Academy of Public Service; and Christy Hart at Hope High School.

Jones said a state required assessment for K-12 English Language Learners is set to begin the week of Jan. 25 and campus schedules for the test have been set on each campus.

“During any and all testing, the district will follow CDC guidelines,” Jones said. “If parents have any questions, please call me or the school test coordinator for your student’s campus.”

Jones may be reached at 870-722-2700, ext. 11.

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