Contact Information

Jessica Steinbrenner
(307) 777-8568

Wy-ALT Portal

The Wyoming Alternate Assessment for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities (Wy-ALT) was administered for the first time in spring 2015. The Wy-ALT is aligned to the Wyoming Content and Performance Standards (WyCPS) and designed to allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in an appropriately rigorous assessment. All information about the Wy-ALT is available on the Wy-ALT Portal.

2016-2017 Wy-ALT Administration

Alternate Assessment Specialty Committee

Wyoming Statewide Alternate Assessment – Wy-ALT

Wyoming’s alternate assessment, Wy-ALT, is designed for a small number of students with the most significant cognitive disabilities. It’s part of a statewide instructionally supportive assessment system which complies with the requirements of federal accountability law and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA).

Wyoming has rigorous academic standards for all students. The Wyoming Department of Education believes that the results of the Wy-ALT, along with other measures of student performance, will enable teachers to provide individualized academic instruction to enable students to achieve high standards of academic performance and improve instructional programs. A student’s participation in the Wy-ALT is appropriate when the Individualized Education Program Team has determined that the student’s academic achievement is best measured by Alternate Academic Achievement Standards, consistent with Wyoming’s participation requirements.

About the Program

The Wy-ALT is administered to students in grades 3 – 11 in ELA, and mathematics and to students in grades 4, 8-11 in science. The Wy-ALT is an individually administered student performance assessment which students demonstrate their mastery of grade-level-aligned extended Wyoming Academic Content Standards.

The grade-level extended Wyoming Academic Content Standards specify essential learning for all students who participate in the Wy-ALT. The extended standards, though reduced in breadth, depth and complexity, are linked to the Wyoming Content and Performance Standards and define the knowledge and skills, which students are expected to master at appropriate levels of challenge. Teachers ensure access to the general academic curriculum through teaching and learning opportunities aligned to the extended Academic Benchmarks. Teachers employ a wide range of instructional strategies as determined by a student’s individual learning characteristics and communication modes and levels, and through the use of adapted, grade-level appropriate materials.


In the Spring of 2014, the WDE requested an opinion from the Wyoming Attorney General’s office regarding parent opt outs from state-mandated testing (e.g. PAWS, ASPIRE, ACT, Wy-ALT). The following is part of the AG’s response:

“In summary, the State Board of Education is authorized to establish the statewide accountability system pursuant to state law, including the Wyoming Accountability in Education Act. It has promulgated rules that require districts to administer the relevant assessments to all students in the appropriate grade levels. These requirements are within the authority granted to the Board by the legislature. Consequently, districts may not allow students or their parents to opt them out of the assessments provided by law.”

The full opinion can be found here: