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World Languages

Principles and Guidelines for Adopting or Creating Locally Developed Benchmark Assessments for Checkpoint A (Modern Languages)

Guidance Document:  Principles and Guidelines for Adopting or Creating Locally Developed Benchmark Assessments for Checkpoint A (Modern Languages*)

*This webinar and the associated guidance document is designed for teachers of modern languages, other than American Sign Language.  We anticipate being able to offer both a guidance document and a webinar in the future that specifically focuses on guidelines for Checkpoint A Benchmark Assessments in American Sign Language.

Presenters:  Dr. Joanne O'Toole, Bill Heller, and Dr. Lori Langer de Ramirez

Original webinar date & time:  Tuesday, January 23rd, 2024, 4:00-5:00 pm

1 hour of CTLE credit offered

Webinar description:   In this session, the presenters will explain the general principles and protocols outlined in the NYSED-OBEWL document, Principles and Guidelines for Adopting or Creating Locally Developed Benchmark Assessments for Checkpoint A (Modern Languages). This document provides guidance to Local Educational Agencies and regional and statewide consortia for the creation of Checkpoint A Benchmark Assessments for Modern Languages aligned to the revised NYS Learning Standards for World Languages. Benchmark assessments are those assessments used to award one high school credit for middle school students prior to entering Grade 9 and to meet the one-credit graduation requirement. Checkpoint A Benchmark Assessments must be aligned to the revised standards for the June 2025 administration.

Click here to download the webinar flyer.

Link to Handouts folder from webinar

Link to recording of webinar

Link to post-assessments

To receive a certificate of completion (including a CTLE certificate), NYS educators must view the recording of the webinar (see link above) in its entirety and then answer at least seven out of ten questions correctly on the post assessment.  If the minimum required score (7 out of 10) is achieved, the educator will receive a certificate via email within an hour.  For the convenience of our World Language educators, there are multiple versions of the post assessment available, should the required score not be achieved on the first attempt.  Educators may take each version of the post assessment once.

Important notes:

  1. Educators may take each version of the post assessment once.  Credit will not be given for taking a single version of the post assessment more than once. 
  2. Credit will not be given for more than one passing score on any of the post assessments for a webinar (listed below) in a single academic year.  
  3. Educators may receive credit for viewing the webinar recording and passing a post assessment once in each academic year and are encouraged to take a different version of the post assessment on a yearly basis to review and test their knowledge of the webinar's content. 
  4. It is the responsibility of the individual educator to keep track of the information on the professional learning they complete each year, including the number of CTLE hours.
  5. Questions about this webinar or the post assessments, should be directed to Candace Black at (518) 473-7505 or at sends e-mail)(link sends e-mail).

Webinar Summary

# of attendees: 470
# of CTLE certificates issued:  336
# of certificates of attendance issued: 134
# of organizations represented by attendees:  241

437 participants from district schools
5 participants from charter schools
6 participants from non-public schools
9 participants from colleges or universities
10 participants from BOCES or RBERNs
3 participants from a government agency

Quotes from participants 

Thank you for your detailed responses and materials.  You are appreciated more than you realize! ~ Amalia M.

Thank you; this was well worth the time. I will check back. ~ Amber R.

Thank you! This was really informative, and the examples were especially helpful. ~ Jennifer S.

Thanks everyone! invigorating things in the works. ~ Deirdre K.

Thank you so much for all the information. Look forward to future webinars for more! ~ Karen D.

I’m actually SO excited to go forward with this new exam!  Thank you all for the great resources and webinars!! ~ Kimberly B.

Thank you!  Super helpful and appreciate the resources! ~ Christina E.

Big thank you - a rich presentation for nearly 500 teachers. ~ Craig B.

Dream Team rocks! ~ Francoise P.

Dr. Joanne O'Toole is a Professor of Modern Language Education in the Curriculum and Instruction Department at SUNY Oswego. She is a member of the Executive Committee of the NYSED World Languages Content Advisory Panel and the Principal Investigator of the NYS World Language Standards Initiative. Joanne has served in several world language leadership positions including NYSAFLT President and NECTFL Director, and is a regular presenter at national, regional, state, and local conferences. Joanne is a certified teacher of Spanish and taught Spanish for 16 years prior to entering post-secondary education.







Bill Heller has taught in public elementary, secondary, community college and undergraduate classrooms for 40 years, including 24 years teaching Spanish at Perry High School. He has been a methods and Spanish instructor at SUNY Geneseo since 2001.  He is a frequent presenter of workshops, webinars and keynotes. Bill served as Conference Chair for the 2018 Northeast Conference (NECTFL) and is currently a member of the Executive Board and Content Advisory Panel for World Languages at the New York State Education Department (NYSED).







Dr. Lori Langer de Ramirez began her language teaching career as a teacher of Spanish, French and ESL. She holds a Master's Degree in Applied Linguistics and a Doctorate in Curriculum and Teaching from Teachers College, Columbia University. She is currently the Director of World and Classical Languages & Global Language Initiatives at the Dalton School in New York City. Lori is the author of books, texts and articles about language teaching and learning and multicultural education. She presents workshops at local, regional and national conferences and works with teachers in schools throughout the U.S. and around the world. Her website ( offers free materials for teaching Chinese, English, French, and Spanish.