Wyoming to Submit Waiver on Speaking and Listening Assessments

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) will submit a waiver application request to the U.S. Department of Education (USED) from the requirement to assess students’ speaking and listening skills for the 2015-16 and 2016-17 school years. Public comment on this waiver request is being taken until April 19, 2016.

In September 2015, the USED released new guidance, which requires states to demonstrate that their assessments are aligned with the full extent of their adopted content standards, under section 1111(b)(3)(C)(ii) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended. The Wyoming Content and Performance Standards in English Language Arts address reading, writing, and language, as well as speaking, and listening. Wyoming’s state assessment system will undergo a peer review this spring to determine how well the statewide assessments address these areas.

The USED has noted that measurement of speaking and listening skills in a statewide assessment may not currently be feasible, and on March 2, 2016 the WDE received additional information on necessary steps for obtaining a waiver from that requirement.

Read Peer Review Letter from USED

The USED requires states to provide notice to the public and an opportunity to comment on the request. Comments must be submitted by April 19, 2016 through the online survey available here: goo.gl/forms/V7uK1zntTw.

– END –

Media Contact:
Kari Eakins, Communications Director
kari.eakins@wyo.gov
307-777-2053