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Common Core State Standards makes accommodations for disabled children

FRIDAY, JUNE 10, 2011 12:52 PM

When the new version of the Common Core State Standards is released in the 2014-2015 school year, it will include advanced accommodations for students who have disabilities, Education Week reports.

Michael Hock - director of educational assessment for the Vermont Department of Education and co-chair of the accessibility and accommodations work group for the SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium - told the news outlet that because the tests will be taken on computers, it will be easier for disabled students to participate. For example, children with sight problems will be able to magnify the text on the screen. Other visually impaired students will be able to change the color of the text that they are reading.

Professionals are also discussing the possibility of allowing the tests to be taken in various languages, including American sign language and Spanish. However, sign language poses a problem, as Hock told the media outlet that translators are not always available to sign to test takers. Currently, officials are experimenting with virtual characters that would read the text to children in sign language.

According to the Common Core State Standards website, over 40 states have already made the decision to adopt this testing service.