Is it that big of a deal to modify a test

Discussion in 'General Education' started by rookieABC123, Oct 6, 2014.

  1. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2007
    Messages:
    17,362
    Likes Received:
    46

    Oct 9, 2014

    When I was a SPED teacher, I did the modifying of the tests/assignments with the help of the teacher. We would sit down together and determine how the test should be modified.


    As far as the diploma issue, in TX in the past, if a student was on modified work and took a modified state assessment, then that student graduated on the minimum plan which simply meant that the student couldn't go directly to a 4 year uni. That didn't bar them from community college though. With the new Foundations plan, it gets a little more complicated, and the state has done away with the modified version...but that's another soapbox moment.
     
  2. Myrisophilist

    Myrisophilist Habitué

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2011
    Messages:
    899
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2014

    I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one who has issues with the SpEd department giving excessive "help" to students with IEPs. Our kids' IEPs state that they can finish their assessments in the resource room, so I have to send the test AND ANSWER KEY to the SpEd teachers. The tests all come back with near perfect grades, even though some of these kids haven't opened a textbook or lifted a pencil in my class for the entire year.
     
  3. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2011
    Messages:
    1,949
    Likes Received:
    16

    Oct 9, 2014

    At my school, our SPED teachers will watch/supervise an IEP student while they are taking a test but they will not modify the test for the gen ed. teachers. Apparently, that is not "their" responsibility.
     
  4. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    4,299
    Likes Received:
    942

    Oct 9, 2014

    I have not worked in a middle school/high school for a long time but if a LOT of modifications have to be made to a test that makes it pretty much so easy it guarantees an "A" then wouldn't it seem the student's disabilities are so severe they shouldn't be in an inclusion class and be in a self-contained class where all work is on a lower level? I don't know if it's possible in some cases but it seems to defeat the purpose of an inclusion class if every assessment is TOTALLY different from their peers.
     
  5. Jem

    Jem Aficionado

    Joined:
    May 7, 2008
    Messages:
    3,544
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2014

    I have all our grade level IEP kiddos this year, and I have no modified a single test. I bust my butt with intervention groups, extra math time, etc. If a student gets lower than a C-, they re-take the test, but we still don't modify it. I do give unlimited time, but I do that for all my students. If my spec ed co-teacher really felt like a kiddo needed it modified, I would, but we're working together to prevent that from happening.
     
  6. rookieABC123

    rookieABC123 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    279
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2014

    Wow. This is a great deal of good information. So interesting to me how differently others states/districts do things and how much they all vary. I think there's a lot to take from all of this.
    Since I've had a chance to read through all the posts I feel I need to clarify some things. I would never ask a teacher to modify ten different tests for ten different students. Our P has asked each teacher to create one modified test for our learning support students. Which basically means less choices and chunking the test. I really don't see anything wrong with that. I have a HUGE problem with teachers who hand write tests for students that are not LEGIBLE!!!! How is that okay???? If a student is staying in the room to take the test then it is embarrassing for them to get a test with a bunch of black marks on it. Wouldn't you feel embarrassed? Like I said before, after the email came out I made sure the science and social studies teachers knew I would help modify any test. I already work very closely with our reading and English since that's my certification. I do make all the modified tests for those subjects.
    Also, in our district teachers were trained on how to modify materials, curriculum, etc....they were told this is what they had to do. It should be everyone's responsibility and we should work together. There's a lot of things that are unfair about my job too!
    Key points I got from this:
    ALL of our jobs are equally hard reg ed and spec ed just different
    We ALL need to be on the same team to help support each other and our students. I hate division between teachers!
    Thank you for all your replies!
     
  7. rookieABC123

    rookieABC123 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    279
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2014

    I like this it makes so much sense. I wish I had more time to pull kids to give them more support. I feel I'm spread too thin so this wouldn't work in my situation.
     
  8. rookieABC123

    rookieABC123 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    279
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2014

    This makes a HUGE amount of sense!
     
  9. rookieABC123

    rookieABC123 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    279
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2014

    I love this. It really puts a lot of what we've talked about on here into perspective!


    Question: I am a regular education teacher. I was told that I must make modifications for a child who does not have an IEP or 504 plan. Must I make modifications for this child? It does not seem fair to make modifications for one child and not the others. What does the law say?

    Pat's Answer: The law does not require you to make modifications for a child who does not have an IEP or a 504. However, teachers make modifications for children all the time. Is it “fair” to:

    • Give children the opportunity to earn passing grades by allowing them to do work for extra credit?

    • Help children after school because they need extra assistance?

    • Give a passing grade to a child who is trying very hard but is not earning one?

    • Send assignments to a child who is at home sick or in the hospital?

    • Let a child turn in an assignment late because the child was absent from school for a grandparent’s funeral?

    • Let a child who uses a wheelchair participate in an another activity while other children must run laps?

    Modifications Level the Playing Field

    These are all very common modifications. Teachers make them every day. Are these modifications “fair?”

    Isn’t it true that these modifications only level the playing field for children who get a bad hand of cards? They do not provide unfair advantages. Life deals our hands from the same deck. Some of us get aces; others get deuces.

    Public education is not a poker game. Public education prepares children for life.

    Modifications on the Job

    As adults, do we question these job modifications?

    • Teachers use paraprofessionals and aides to help in the classroom.

    • Executives use secretaries to help with daily duties.

    • Secretaries use computers to aid in drafting letters and documents.

    • Attorneys use paralegals to do research and draft documents.

    • Paralegals use modern technology, i.e., the internet to conduct research.

    • Doctors use nurses to perform daily care of patients.

    • Nurses use modern technology to help them care for patients.

    These modifications allow us to be effective and efficient. They allow us to be productive and to concentrate on our actual work product instead of on the work process.

    In the grand scheme of things, these modifications are relatively modern items.

    Not long ago, teachers and principals used to be responsible for the entire school. Attorneys used to write documents by hand. Doctors went from house to house to care for patients, without help from nurses. Secretaries used to write documents by hand.

    Modifications in Everyday Life

    Today, we:

    • Drive to work instead of walking, or riding a horse. Cars are modifications that allow us to get to our destination quickly, comfortably, and efficiently (for the most part).

    • Wear glasses that modify our vision and allow us to see better.

    • Sew by machine, not by hand.

    • Cook with stoves and ovens, not over a fireplace.

    I could list many other modifications that allow us to be efficient and effective.

    What Will a Child Lose if You Provide Modifications?

    The real question is not whether making modifications is “fair,” but what will be lost if you provide modifications to this child? What is the right thing to do for this individual child?

    Will the child be able to focus on learning, instead of the condition that causes the child to need modifications?

    If teachers provided the modifications children needed, we might not need laws and costly evaluations. Heck, we might not even need special education.

    Resources on Accommodations & Modifications

    - See more at: http://www.wrightslaw.com/howey/tchr.mods.unfair.htm#sthash.Sb7MMmOs.dpuf
     
  10. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2013
    Messages:
    4,252
    Likes Received:
    791

    Oct 9, 2014

    There's a difference between giving a paraplegic a wheelchair, and deliberately making a test easier so a student can pass it, while giving the same credit that everybody else got. If I work with a student after school and they pass the test, they still pass the same test and they still did the work. If I let a student turn in an assignment a week late, they still did the work. If I take a student's test and make it far easier, that's not doing the same work.

    As far as I'm concerned, all the things listed there are accommodations and adaptations, not modifications. If I read aloud a math test to a student, that student is still doing the work. If I scribe a test for a student, they are still doing the work. If I take off five questions, give a student a word bank for fill-in-the-blanks, and eliminate distracters for MC questions, that isn't the same work, and shouldn't be rewarded with the same credit. They certainly deserve credit for the work they are able to do, and for the learning they can show, but it should still be clearly identified on a transcript, etc., that a C under these conditions is vastly different from a C earned by others in the same class.
     
  11. comaba

    comaba Cohort

    Joined:
    May 21, 2011
    Messages:
    624
    Likes Received:
    1

    Oct 9, 2014

    Not to nitpick, but I don't believe you said in this thread that you offered to help anyone.
     
  12. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Messages:
    4,325
    Likes Received:
    557

    Oct 9, 2014

    rookie, your analogies don't work. A better analogy would be paying me, a middle-aged short woman millions of dollars to bounce a ball down a court even though I can't shoot, dribble or run to save my life. After all, it isn't "FAIR" that I'm short, old and clumsy.
     
  13. rookieABC123

    rookieABC123 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    279
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2014

    The fact of the matter is, I would help and do offer my help to anyone who wants it. Yes, funny, I forgot to mention that in my post. Thanks for pointing that out.

    Some teachers just flat out don't want others modifying their tests. However, they continue to give handwritten tests to students that have a DISABILITY IN READING. That is WRONG. It's hard enough that the student has a difficult time reading let alone now they have to decipher someone's hand writing because the letter "r" looks like the letter "i"
    Is it that much more time consuming to type instead of writing something by hand? Please tell me where you feel I am wrong in thinking this way?
     
  14. OhThePlaces

    OhThePlaces Cohort

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2007
    Messages:
    527
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 10, 2014

    I am very thankful that my VE teacher modifies the grade level tests for us.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. bella84,
  2. Brooke Kelterborn,
  3. Brandon Garrel,
  4. MissBee06
Total: 515 (members: 6, guests: 488, robots: 21)
test