DLM Aligned K-6 Early Literacy Alternate Assessment

About the Assessment

The State of Iowa’s Early Literacy Alternate Assessment – the Dynamic Learning Maps Aligned K-6 Early Alternate Assessment is a yearlong instructionally embedded assessment that includes three assessment windows. The reporting windows mirror the end of the ELI (e.g., FAST) Reporting Windows for students that participate in the general education assessment.

Fall

  • Fall Instructional / Artifact Collection Window – Aug. 17 – Oct. 9, 2020
  • Fall Reporting Window – Sept. 9 – Oct. 9, 2020

Winter

  • Winter Instructional / Artifact Collection Window – Oct. 12, 2020 – Feb. 26, 2021
  • Winter Reporting Window – Feb. 15 – 26, 2021

Spring

  • Spring Instructional / Artifact Collection Window – March 1 – June 4, 2021
  • Spring Reporting Window – May 17 – June 4, 2021

Teachers are required to enter student performance within the State of Iowa Literacy Alternate Assessment (ELAA) online system by the end date of each reporting window.

Clarification on evidence retention for students that participate in the K-6 EL AA: the Iowa Department of Education will not request student evidence beyond the fall of the school year following the school year for which benchmarking was reported. However, districts must keep all data that is educationally relevant for a minimum of 5 years or until it is no longer educationally relevant, whichever is longer.

District Assessment Preparation Steps: Aug. 17 – Oct. 1, 2020

  1. All teachers complete the required training for the assessments that they will be giving this year. Training is accessible through Iowa’s Alternate Assessment Google Site.
  2. Buildings are registered in the State of Iowa’s EL AA online system. 
    • In the EL AA system, District Alternate Assessment Coordinators will register themselves and can register their building administrators, or building administrators create their own accounts. District Alternate Assessment Coordinators will enroll teachers after the system opens on Tuesday, August 25, 2020.
    • Directions for creating a user account are found in a tutorial located on the homepage of the EL AA Online system under the support tab.
    • If you are a new district-level contact and need an account set up in the EL AA System, contact Jennifer Denne to have an account created.
    • District and Building Administrators and teachers must have accounts set up by Sept. 14, 2020.
  1. Teachers set up accounts in the State of Iowa’s EL AA online system.
  2. Teachers roster students in the State of Iowa’s EL AA online system
  3. For benchmarking purposes, in grades K-3 teachers gather evidence and report scores during each reporting period on scales 1-4 and 6 as required by the EL AA. Scale 5, Writing: Text Types and Purposes, is optional.

The screening data will continue to be a structured portfolio containing three pieces of student evidence for each scale. The three distinct forms of evidence should indicate not that the student mastered a skill in a single way, but instead, the student demonstrated understanding in a variety of ways. The structured portfolio approach provides an accurate picture of students’ abilities to generalize and apply skills in multiple settings and routines.

Due to the range of instructional options that are being locally determined by schools in Iowa due to the COVID-19 pandemic, for this school year only (2020-21), the three pieces of evidence can be from the same type of data collection source (ex. anecdotal notes, performance data, work samples, photos, etc.)

  1. Teachers monitor progress monthly in grades K-6 on a minimum of one scale as selected by the IEP team and as required by the EL AA. Evidence used for progress monitoring and screening data should be collected from instructional activities or routines and should not be collected through a separate “assessment event.”
  2. The Dynamic Learning Maps Aligned K-6 Early Literacy Alternate Assessment manual and other instructional resources are located on Iowa’s Alternate Assessment Google Site.

Note: Paraprofessionals/Classroom Associates are allowed to assist in the evidence collection for the Early Literacy Alternate Assessment.

State of Iowa’s Early Literacy Alternate Assessment (ELAA) Online System Support Desk

To request assistance from the State of Iowa’s ELAA Online System Support Desk, district staff will submit a support ticket. Directions for submitting a support ticket are found in a tutorial located on the EL AA Online system homepage under the support tab.

When contacting the Early Literacy Alternate Assessment Online System Support Desk or the Iowa Department of Education for assistance in administering the DLM Aligned K-6 Early Alternate Assessment, the only allowable student information districts may share via email is the student’s state identification number. Do not include the student’s name or date of birth.

Note: 3rd through 6th graders eligible for alternate assessment will participate in BOTH the K-6 early literacy alternate assessment and the DLM.

DLM Aligned K-6 Early Literacy Alternate Assessment