SECTION 1. Section 1I of Chapter 69 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2014 Official Edition, is hereby amended by adding the following two paragraphs at the end thereof: -
At the beginning of each school year, school districts must notify parents or guardians of enrolled students with the following information about each standardized assessment from kindergarten through twelfth grade that is required by the state or by the federal government:
(a) The subject areas covered by each assessment and what will be measured by each;
(b) When each standardized assessment will be administered;
(c) Whether each standardized test has been screened for bias;
(d) The time expected to take each standardized assessment;
(e) Whether students will be required to take standardized assessments online, or have the option of paper and pencil;
(f) Which assessments will be required for graduation and what options students have to meet graduation requirements if they do not pass a given assessment;
(g) How assessment results affect a student's high school and beyond plan and course-taking progression leading to timely graduation, as well as whether results of standardized assessments will be used for program placement or grade level advancement;
(h) When the assessment results will be released to parents or guardians and whether there will be an opportunity for parents and teachers to discuss strategic instructional adjustments;
(i) The process, forms, and time necessary to access individual students' tests;
(j) How the assessment and assessment results will advance student learning;
(k) The amount of instructional time spent in administering the assessment;
(l) The financial cost to both the school district and Commonwealth of administering the assessment;
(m) Whether the assessment is required by the Commonwealth, by the federal government, or by both; and,
(n) The availability of appropriate accommodations for students with disabilities and English language learners, with information for parents in languages other than English for non-English speaking parents.
The department of elementary and secondary education shall provide to school districts regularly updated information necessary for districts to notify parents of the information under this section, including any changes occurring through regulatory, legislative or federal action, that will affect current or future assessments; further, the department shall provide templates and any other assistance necessary to notify parents on a timely basis; provided, further, the department shall institute a grant program for school districts to pay any costs associated with preparing, printing or distributing information to parents, as required by this section, and funding for said grant program and any other costs to the department shall come from the funding allocated for the administration of the state assessment system.
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