Testing and Assessment
Victor Mendez joins NVVA as the new ELL Coordinator, after spending the last 9 working in the public and private school system, along with teaching at the college level. Originally from Los Angeles, CA, he attended the University of Southern California, where he earned his first Master’s degree in Education, with a focus on Understanding the Needs of ELL Students. Additionally, he recently completed a second Master’s degree in Educational Policy & Leadership from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Mr. Mendez has served as an elementary school teacher, middle school English teacher, Strategist, Academic Literacy Advisor & ESL instructor for CSN.
Dr. Deborah Whitmoyer has been an educator for over 25 years. Originally from Pennsylvania, she attended Penn State University where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Secondary Education Social Studies. She also attended Shippensburg University for her Master's degree in History, and Gwynedd Mercy University for her Doctorate in Educational Leadership. She has been a classroom teacher, dual enrollment teacher, new teacher induction coordinator, and school director. In her spare time, she has coached field hockey and soccer. Dr. Whitmoyer believes that every student should have the opportunity and the supports necessary to achieve their dreams.
Testing and Assessment
How is student progress assessed?
Nevada Virtual Academy is a mastery-based program for 6th grade, which means students master concepts and lessons before moving on to the next lesson. Students are required to submit work samples to their teachers for evaluation and feedback. Teachers assess mastery and provide quantitative feedback in the secondary grades to students and families.
What tests are required as part of the program?
For the 2021-2022 school year students are mandated to complete the tests listed below. If you would like more information about these tests, you can visit the Nevada Department of Education’s website: http://www.doe.nv.gov/Assessments/
Throughout the year:
- Grades 6-12 also take the MAP Reading and Math for our interim progress monitoring.
- • Students in all grades identified as English Language Learners (ELL) take the WIDA English Language Proficiency Assessment.
- • Grade 11, to be eligible for graduation, participates in the ACT, which will be free of charge when administered by the school. A student’s ACT score will not be used to determine graduation eligibility but can be submitted with college applications.
- • Grades 6–8 are required to participate in the Smarter Balance Assessment, based on grade level.
- • Grades 8 and 10 must participate in the Science assessments.
- • Students in high school courses will be required to take End of Course assessments at the end of the designated courses (English 10, Algebra I, Geometry I).
- • The Nevada Alternative Assessment is given to students at designated grade levels when appropriate.
- • Career and Technical Education (CTE) Assessments
Multiple test sites around the state will be available for students to take many of these tests. Information about these sites will be forthcoming as the testing deadlines approach.
The Nevada Virtual Academy Parent/Student Handbook 2021–2022, provided to all parents and students, states all students are required to participate in mandated testing and are subject to disciplinary actions if they do not participate. Also, students who do not participate in state mandated testing will have their letter grades reduced in the tested course by one (1) letter grade.
At NVVA we use Testing Nirvana as our testing event management program. Leading up to testing we will send out a variety of emails with important information and student appointments using Testing Nirvana. Please add the email address firstname.lastname@example.org to your trusted sender list, otherwise time sensitive emails could be delivered to your junk or spam folder.
Do I have to participate in state testing?
The Nevada Virtual Academy Parent/Student Handbook 2021–2022, provided to all parents and students, states all students are required to participate in state testing and are subject to disciplinary actions if they do not participate. Also, students who do not participate in state testing will have their letter grades reduced in the tested course by one (1) letter grade.
WIDA Testing FAQs
What is ACCESS for ELLs 2.0?
ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 is an English language proficiency assessment for Grades 6–12. The test is administered every year to help school districts monitor the English language development of students identified as English language learners.
What is the purpose of the test?
ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 measures students’ abilities to understand and produce English used within school settings. The four sections of the test are Listening, Reading, Speaking, and Writing.
Why does my child have to take the test?
Your child is identified as an English language learner. Your child will take the test every year until his/her scores meet the criteria to exit the language support program. Contact your child’s school for more information on how your child was identified as an English language learner.
When will my child take the test?
Every state sets a time frame for schools to administer ACCESS for ELLs 2.0. Schools schedule when students will take the four sections of the test during the testing time frame. Contact your child’s school for more specific information on when your child is scheduled to take.
How are the test scores used?
Scores from ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 can be used in many ways. Parents can use the scores to advocate for their child. Teachers use the scores to plan instruction and assessments. Districts use the scores to evaluate their language support programs, to monitor student progress in acquiring English, and to determine if a student is eligible to exit an English language support program. Scores are also used to meet federal and state accountability requirements.