Johnny Key

Commissioner of Education

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Assessments for Students with Disabilities


(Little Rock, AR) – The Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) is seeking public comment on its request for a waiver of 34 C.F.R. §200.6(c)(2), which limits the total number of students assessed in a subject area using an alternate assessment at no more than one percent (1%) of the total number of students assessed in the state.

The proposed waiver request will be available for review from Friday, November 10, 2017, through Monday, December 11, 2017.  Paper copies of the waiver request may be viewed at the ADE Special Education Unit: 1401 W. Capitol, Suite 450, Little Rock, Arkansas 72201.  Any individual or organization may submit written comments on the proposed waiver pursuant to 34 C.F.R.§200.6(c)(4). Written comments will be accepted from Friday, November 10, 2017 through Monday, December 11, 2017.

Arkansas Alt Assessment Waiver Request


All students are expected to participate in state assessments. Students with disabilities who are served in their school districts under an Individualized Education Program (IEP) as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act Amendments of 2004 (IDEA) and Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), signed by the President on December 10, 2015, shall be assessed in one of two ways:
1.  ACT Aspire with accommodations for grades 3-10.
2.  Students with significant disabilities, for whom the ACT Aspire assessment is not appropriate, shall participate in the following assessments: 
  • Multi-State Alternate Assessment-Alternate Achievement Standards for grades 3-8 and 11 for math and ELA, if they meet the eligibility criteria, and 
  • Arkansas Alternate Portfolio Assessment (AAPA) in science for grades 5, 7 and 10.
The content standards are the same for all students in Arkansas. The difference for students with significant cognitive disabilities is the manner in which they are assessed. The results of the MSAA-AAS and the Alternate Portfolios should demonstrate progress toward meeting the Arkansas standards.
The information needed for the MSAA and the AAPA can be found by clicking the appropriate icon below.
Effective Date: September 1, 2014 

Revised Date: September 18, 2017


For more information, please contact:

Ann Finch, Student Assessment Specialist
Arkansas Department of Education
Division of Learning Services
Four Capitol Mall, Room 301-B
Little Rock, AR 72201
Phone: 501-682-4558

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