What are the first steps that Ms. Flores, the school principal, and the School Improvement Team should take to support students with disabilities throughout the school system?

Page 7: Adequately Prepare Students for Tests


If assessments are to accurately measure what students with disabilities have learned, several key steps should be taken to implement the test situations outlined for students in their IEPs.

  Tips for Implementation  
pencil Students should be informed of the upcoming test and given the opportunity to discuss any concerns they have. Describe the test for students and help them to understand why it is necessary.  
pencil Feedback should be obtained from students on the accommodations that have been recommended for them. Ideally, students would be involved in the initial decisions regarding their testing accommodations.  

To help students to prepare for the test:

  • Teach them the importance of good rest, proper nutrition, and effective relaxation techniques.
  • Explain the format, time limits, and directions for the test.
pencil Ensure that the information and skills students are expected to know have been taught in class.  

Thurlow, M. L., Elliott, J. L., & Ysseldyke, J. E. (© 2003 by Corwin Press). Testing students with disabilities, pp 138–143. Reprinted by permission of Corwin Press, Inc. 

Listen as Virginia Richardson explains how teachers can guide parents as they help their students to prepare for the “big test” (time: 1:11).   


Virginia Richardson
PACER Center
(Parent Advocacy Coalition for Educational Rights)
Parent Training Manager
Minneapolis, MN

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