Test Administrator Certification

Some of you have reported issues with the AzMERIT Test Administrator Certification site not recognizing when some teachers have completed their certification.  This is a know issue at the state’s end of things and they have reported that the problem should be resolved for any NEW test administrators taking the test.

If teachers who have already taken the certification have problems authenticating, they should follow these steps…

STEP 1:  Log back in to the Test Administrator’s Certification Site

STEP 2:  Click on the link “Take the Course Again”

STEP 3:  It is NOT NECESSARY go through all of the slides again.  Users should just skip to the end of the presentation to the last slide and then click NEXT.

Check marks next to each of the Questions slides (#42, #43, #44) indicate that these questions have already been answered (see below).

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The test administrator should now be able to reprint their certification to confirm that they are registered.

Administering the AzMERIT Practice Test

In order to prepare for the AzMERIT test which begins the week of April 13th, teachers and students should schedule time to complete a practice test during the week of March 30th.

When administering the practice test with students, it is recommended that teachers attempt to replicate an actual testing environment as closely as possible.  This will provide teachers, students, and test coordinators the opportunity to work through the process and make everyone more comfortable with these new assessment procedures.

Launching the Test (Teachers)

The AzMERIT Sample Test must be launched via the Test Administrator’s Training Site.  Prior to the week of April 13th, teachers should ONLY access the TA Training Site and not the AzMERIT Test Administration Site (see below).

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If you have any questions concerning this process, or if you believe that a student may have inadvertently accessed the actual AzMERIT test (as opposed to the SAMPLE Test), please contact us at the number listed below right away.

Hans Schott:  (520) 904-3453

Frank McCormick: (520) 979-9648

Entering the AzMERIT SAMPLE Test (Students)
When entering the SAMPLE Test via the AIR Secure Testing Browser please remind students to pay attention to the following steps.
1. Once the test administrator has launched the session and written down the SAMPLE test session number on the board, students should click on the Go to the Sample Test Site link on the page.
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2. Before filling in their information, students should un-check the boxes for Guest User and Guest Session on the page.

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3. Students can not fill in their information, provided either by the test administrator or by the log-in cards printed out prior to the test.

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Please remember that these and other directions for administering the SAMPLE tests can be found by reviewing the AzMERIT Guide to Sample Tests- Spring 2015. 

AzMERIT- Frequently Asked Questions

INFORMATION DISTRIBUTION

Q: Will the District be sending information to parents about AzMERIT testing?

A: Yes. A parent letter is being prepared to go home April 1 and an AzMERIT facts sheet will be provided for schools to have in their front office. Information is also going out via the SUSD Website, ParentLink, and banners.

 

MANUALS

Q: Do we need to print the Test Administration Directions?

A: No. Printed copies are scheduled to arrive April 7 and should get to the sites of can be picked up April 8.

 

Q: What do we do with the Test Coordinator’s Manuals and Test Administration Directions after testing?

A: Manuals should be recycled when testing is complete at the site.

 

TIDE

Q: Do all staff members need a TIDE user account?

A: No. Only those who will be administering the test or need access to student or staff rosters need TIDE accounts.

 

Q: Do Test Administrators need to complete the Test Administrator Certification?

A: Yes. The system will not allow users to administer the test unless they have completed the TA Certification. This includes the administration of the sample tests through the secure browser. A list of TAs and their TA Certification status is available to Site Testing Coordinators through TIDE. The District will monitor and follow up with sites regarding users in the system who haven’t TA Certified.

 

Q: Are all of the students enrolled in the Test Information Distribution Engine (TIDE)?

A: Yes. The synchronization with SAIS and TIDE was complete before Rodeo Break. We’ve been updating the rosters daily based on entries and withdrawals.

 

Q: What if a student or staff user isn’t in TIDE?

A: Before the testing window, submit the issue to the HelpDesk so that we can track the requests. During the testing window we will provide a phone number for Site Testing Coordinators to use for immediate support.

 

Q: How do we remove students from TIDE?

A: We don’t. It will happen automatically when a new school/district picks up the student. If not picked up, the student will remain in our TIDE enrollment. FYI…A-F Accountability will not be based on the enrollments in TIDE.

 

TEST TICKETS

Q: Are we required to use the Test Tickets that can be printed from TIDE?

A: No. However, they are a simple way to provide students with the logon information they will need to access the test.  (see next question!)

 

Q: Can we print Test Tickets now?

A: Yes/No. Student lists can be exported from TIDE without issue. However, there is a currently a glitch that only allows 100 test tickets to be printed at one time. We’ll do a work-around and provide Test Tickets for you if ADE doesn’t quickly resolve the issue. You are welcome to use the export function in TIDE to create your own Test Tickets.

 

Q: What do we do with scratch paper after testing?

A: Scratch paper should be shredded after students have completed the test. Site Testing Coordinators will need to sign a statement acknowledging that they have done so.

 

SAMPLE TESTS

Q: Do students need to participate in the sample tests?

A: Yes. Each student should be guided through the process of logging into the Secure Browser and how to use the online tools. This will allow them to become familiar with the testing format and tools before the actual test. This should , take place during the week of March 30. (Techs have already  been given directions on how to submit the schedule to the District.)

 

Q: Are IEP/504 accommodations ready for students in TIDE?

A: No. There will be a meeting (March 31…10am in the Palo Verde) for Site Testing Coordinators and/or SPED resource personnel to discuss accommodations and enter them into TIDE. (more details to follow)

 

Q: Will accommodations be available for the sample tests?

A: Yes, as long as the site has entered them into TIDE for the individual student. Sites may want to schedule a separate sample test for students who will be using accommodations so that they can be guided through their accommodations as well as the other tools.

 

Q: How should we use the sample tests?

A: The purpose of the sample tests are to prepare for the logistics and process of testing with the AIR system before the actual test. Test Administrators will become familiar with what’s involved in administering the test, students to become familiar with logging on, test formats, how to move through the test, and the tools available. It is NOT to practice/review the content being tested. Attempting to use it for that purpose is a waste of instructional time.

Q: Can visitors be in the building during AzMERIT?

A: Visitors may not be in the building during active AzMERIT testing days based on the individual school schedule.

 

Q: Do Reading Part 1 and Mathematics Part 1 need to be administered on the same day?

A: Yes, unless it is a make-up situation for individual students.

 

Q: Can students use paper to create graphic organizers during the writing test?

A: Yes. “All schools must provide scratch paper (plain, lined, or graph), pencils, and erasers for all students participating in AzMERIT Grades 3–8 testing. Scratch paper is required for ELA–

Writing and Grades 3–8 Math tests. Scratch paper is prohibited for ELA–Reading.” SPRING 2015 AzMERIT Test Administration Directions Grades 3-8, p. 3

The same applies to the EOC tests..scratch paper must be provided for writing and math but is prohibited for reading.

(We’re waiting for a response from ADE regarding the use of whiteboards instead of paper.)

 

Q: How soon will a new student be enrolled in TIDE?

A: TIDE updates are performed each morning based on PowerSchool changes the previous day. If a student was entered into PowerSchool but is missing from TIDE, call 545-2181 for assistance.

New AzMERIT Information Released

ADE has posted the following helpful materials which should assist you and your staff in preparing for your scheduled practice tests during the week of March 30th, 2015.

Spring 2015 Test Administrator’s Directions- Grades 3-8

Test Administrator’s Directions- End of Course (High School)

Interactive Video Guide to the Sample Test

You will also notice that the AIR Online Calculator has been added to the secure browser.  Students can now practice with the calculator by clicking on the “Go to Online Calculator” link within the secure browser OR by visiting the AIR Calculator Link (click here).

Please remember to click the link here to let us know what your planned practice testing schedule will be for the week of March 30th.  This will allow us to insure that you have the proper I.T. support in place to maximize network performance.

Testing Update and Proposed Deadlines

Thanks to everyone who was able to join us at the District AzMERIT Information Meetings which we held on Monday (3/9) and Tuesday (3/10) this week.  The following information is designed as a brief summary of some of the major points which were discussed as part of this process.  You can visit http://azmeritportal.org/resources/?section=4 for more specific details concerning the AzMERIT test.

 

HARDWARE:  Due to limitations on pixel count and screen size, iPads, Lenovo and ASUS Netbooks, as well as all other district mobile devices may not be used to complete testing.  If you have specific questions as to whether a devices, please refer to the support chart below.

 

SECURE BROWSER:  Students can ONLY take the test by using the AIR Secure Testing Browser installed on their machines.  

 

  • ChromeBooks: The browser app will be launched via the Device Management dashboard in Google.
  • System Center: If the browser does not show up via policy, it can also be installed via Start Menu -> Microsoft System Center 2012 -> Configuration Center -> Software Center

 

 

IMPORTANT DEADLINES:

 

  • Thursday 3/12:  Serial numbers for all Chromebooks should be organized into their appropriate OU containers in the Google Device Manager Dashboard.

 

 

 

  • Friday 3/13:  
  • AzMERIT dashboard notifications will begin being sent out to all student chromebook devices as a reminder to get devices repaired.  These reminders will continue each TUESDAY and FRIDAY up until testing begins on April 13th.
  • I.T. Techs will support device repair at both high schools

 

 

 

  • Monday 3/23:  All student roster information uploaded to TIDE  testing system
  • Tuesday 3/24:  Confirm that secure browser installation has completed on all student Windows devices.
  • Wednesday 3/25: ITCs/PFs to complete teacher and site training during staff collaboration time.  All Test Administrators should have completed the certification process at this time.
  • Friday 3/27: Secure web browser should be installed on all desktop machines, classroom sets and laptop labs.
  • Monday 3/30: AzMERIT Practice Testing begins at all school sites.  This should be a simple 30 minute process to confirm that all students are able to launch the browser and access a practice test launched by their test administrator.
  • Friday 4/3: Confirm lab location for make-ups, testing overflow…etc. to handle students who do not have available/working devices during testing.
  • Wednesday 4/8:  AzMERIT Instructional packets and directions to arrive via district office mail.  If you have not received materials by this time, contact Hans Schott ASAP
  • Friday 4/10:  Establish sufficient loaner pool to provide students with laptop support during the testing process.

 

 

AZ MERIT TESTING SCHEDULE

 

 

  • Monday 4/13- Friday 4/17
    • Grades 3-8:  Writing Test
    • Grades 9-12: End of Course Tests

  • Monday 4/20- Friday 4/24

 

      • Grades 3-8: Math and Reading (Part 1)
      • Grades 9-12: End of Course Tests

 

  • Monday 4/27- Friday 5/1

 

    • Grades 3-8: Math and Reading (Part 2)

 

Please remember to subscribe to our AzMERIT Support Page at http://blog.susd12.org/azmerit/ for the latest information as it becomes available.  

 

You can refer to the Support Chart below regarding questions or operational concerns.

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