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Conference to Address Accommodating Students With Disabilities on State Assessments

Conference to Address Accommodating Students With Disabilities on State Assessments

PRINCETON, NJ -- (MARKET WIRE) -- 01/19/06 -- The nation's top education experts will gather at a conference in Savannah, GA, March 19-21, to discuss how best to accommodate students with disabilities on state academic assessments.

The conference, "Accommodating Students with Disabilities on State Assessments: What Works?" will be held at the Savannah Marriott Riverfront. Participants will include educational practitioners and researchers who are interested in issues surrounding the fairness, use, and impact of state assessments given to students with disabilities. ETS, the Council for Exceptional Children, the College Board, and the Institute for Urban School Improvement, are sponsoring the event.

Other topics to be addressed at the conference include:

--  The fairness and validity of test accommodations
--  Implementation of test accommodations in K-12 and postsecondary
--  Use of accommodations in instruction
--  The influence of K-12 assessments on instructional practices
--  Helping Individual Education Plan (IEP) teams make decisions about
    selecting accommodations
--  Legal concerns about accommodating students with disabilities

"Legislation such as the No Child Left Behind Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act has had a profound impact on the assessment of students with disabilities in K-12 settings," explains Linda Cook, Principle Research Scientist at ETS. "School testing authorities are caught between ensuring that scores from assessments are valid and reliable, and providing accommodations that are needed to improve the accessibility of state assessments."

"In addition this conference will also provide practitioners such as special education teachers and school psychologists, with the information they need to determine appropriate accommodations for their students," explains ETS research scientist Cara Cahalan-Laitusis.

Featured speakers include:

Jamal Abedi, University of California, Davis
Patricia Almond, University of Oregon
Karen Barton, CTB/McGraw-Hill
Cara Cahalan-Laitusis, ETS
Lindy Crawford, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs
Lizanne DeStefano, University of Illinois
Robert Dolan, Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST)
Stephen Elliott, Vanderbilt University
Jane Ewing, Rhode Island College
Tracey Hall, CAST
Meagan Karvonen, Western Carolina University
Janette Klingner University of Colorado at Boulder
Rebecca Kopriva, University of Maryland
Deborah Lazarus, The College Board
Nicole Ofiesh, University of Arizona
Mary Pitoniak, ETS
Diana Pullin, Boston College
James Shriner, University of Illinois
Stephen Sireci, University of Massachusetts
Martha Thurlow, University of Minnesota
Gerald Tindal, University of Oregon
Daniel Wiener, Massachusetts Department of Education

To register for "Accommodating Students with Disabilities on State Assessments: What Works?" contact Kathy Howell, (609) 734-1046, [email protected], or Kitty Sheehan (609) 734-5193, [email protected]. The registration fee is $250 until March 3, 2006. After that time, the conference fee is $300.


ETS is a nonprofit institution with the mission to advance quality and equity in education by providing fair and valid assessments, research, and related services for all people worldwide. In serving individuals, educational institutions and government agencies around the world, ETS customizes solutions to meet the need for teacher professional development products and services, classroom and end-of-course assessments, and research-based teaching and learning tools. Founded in 1947, ETS today develops, administers and scores more than 24 million tests annually in more than 180 countries, at over 9,000 locations worldwide. Additional information is available at

Tom Ewing
(609) 683-2803

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