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West Virginia Assessment Letter

June 26, 2006

The Honorable Steve Paine
State Superintendent of Schools
West Virginia Department of Education
Building 6, 1900 Kanawha Blvd. E.
Charleston, West Virginia 25305-0330

Dear Superintendent Paine:

I am pleased to approve West Virginia’s standards and assessment system under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), as amended by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB). I congratulate you on meeting this important NCLB requirement.

My decision is based on input from peer reviewers external to the U.S. Department of Education (the Department) and Department staff who reviewed and carefully considered the evidence submitted by West Virginia. I have concluded that the evidence demonstrates that West Virginia’s standards and assessment system satisfies the NCLB requirements. Specifically, West Virginia’s system includes academic content and student achievement standards in reading/language arts, mathematics, and science; alternate achievement standards for students with the most significant cognitive disabilities in reading/language arts and mathematics; assessments in each of grades 3 through 8 and grade 10 in reading/language arts, mathematics, and science; and alternate assessments for reading/language arts and mathematics. Accordingly, West Virginia’s system warrants Full Approval. This status means that West Virginia’s standards and assessment system meets all statutory and regulatory requirements. West Virginia should plan to submit its alternate assessment in science for peer review by the 2007-08 school year.

Please be aware that approval of West Virginia’s assessment system under NCLB is not a determination that the system complies with Federal civil rights requirements, including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Finally, please remember that, if West Virginia makes significant changes in its assessment system, the State must submit information about those changes to the Department for review and approval.

We have found it a pleasure working with your staff on this review. Please accept my congratulations for your State’s approved standards and assessment system under NCLB. I wish you well in your continued efforts to improve student achievement in West Virginia.

Sincerely,

Henry L. Johnson

cc: Governor Joe Manchin III
Jan Barth
Keith Butcher

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Last Modified: 07/03/2006