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Testing Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: Policy and Tools to Guide Decision-Making and Implementation

Testing Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: Policy and Tools to Guide Decision-Making and Implementation, was developed by the New York State Education Department (NYSED) to assist school personnel in making appropriate decisions for considering, documenting, and implementing testing accommodations for students with disabilities. Testing accommodations are changes that remove certain disability-related obstacles to the testing process, allowing students with disabilities to participate in assessments on an equitable basis with their nondisabled peers. Such accommodations provide students with the ability to demonstrate skills and attainment of knowledge without being limited or unfairly restricted due to the effects of a disability.

This guidance document supersedes the guidance in NYSED’s May 2006 Test Access and Accommodations for Students with Disabilities. Updates in the guidance document cover areas including, but not limited to: computer-based testing, assistive technology accommodations, tests read, use of spell-check devices/software, procedures on the use of a scribe and multiple day test administration. This guidance document should be used in conjunction with the School Administrator’s Manuals for all assessments and examinations included in the New York State testing program.

Questions regarding this memorandum may be directed to the Special Education Policy Unit at (518) 473-2878 or to speced@nysed.gov.