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Public Policy : Policy Resources Last Updated: Aug 31st, 2006 - 16:01:19

Tool Kit on Teaching and Assessing Students With Disabilities
By John H. Hager
May 2, 2006, 08:09

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Dear Colleagues,

I am pleased to announce the release on April 25, 2006, of the Tool Kit on Teaching and Assessing Students With Disabilities, a collaborative effort of OSERS and the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), to assist states in raising the achievement of all students with disabilities.

The Tool Kit provides up-to-date guidance on designing and implementing high-quality assessments for students with disabilities. We have also included a set of technical assistance products that offer practical, research-based approaches to the challenges schools are facing in the areas of assessment, instruction, behavioral interventions and use of accommodations for students with disabilities. In addition, you will find information about research now under way to further expand our knowledge about how best to support teaching, learning and assessing.

OESE Assistant Secretary Henry Johnson and I released the Tool Kit on April 25, at a meeting of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) here in Washington, D.C. Our initial audiences for this Tool Kit are those in state-level leadership positions. As such, OSERS is providing copies of the Tool Kit to the CSSOs, as well as to state directors of special education.

The Tool Kit is also being produced on CD for dissemination to state assessment directors and others around the country. Our hope is that they in turn will share these materials with others who have responsibility for improving teaching and assessing for all students.

In addition, to facilitate broad dissemination of these materials, we have launched a Web site, accessible through http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/osers, which includes the materials in the Tool Kit. The Web site will be updated with additional materials as they become available.

You can also access a Department press release about the Tool Kit at

This Tool Kit is an example of the Department of Education's ongoing commitment to ensuring that states, local school districts, schools and families have the most current and relevant information about practices that will improve and enhance education opportunities for students with disabilities throughout the nation. We appreciate the work you do every day to improve the academic achievement of students with disabilities and hope you find these materials useful as you continue to strengthen accountability and assessments for all students.


John H. Hager

© Copyright 2006 HECSE

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