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“Ensuring that we are providing the same measurable and valid data for Spanish-speaking students is paramount to equitable assessment.” — Adam Withycombe, D.Ed., Manager of Content Design and Development for Spanish assessment at NWEA

PORTLAND, Ore.

NWEA, the not-for-profit assessment solutions provider, today announced the launch of two new Spanish assessment offerings within its existing MAP Suite, including Spanish MAP Growth Reading and Spanish MAP Reading Fluency. The assessments will be available for the next school year, beginning in fall 2019, and will be included at no additional charge as part of MAP Growth and MAP Reading Fluency assessments.

These new Spanish assessments, which join the previously available Spanish MAP Growth Math, will allow for access and fairness in assessment of Spanish-speaking students and provide an equitable tool to help teachers reach students who have historically been underserved. The assessments also provide administrators with the accurate data they need to make effective program decisions and track progress for Spanish-speaking students.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, there are approximately 4.8 million English Language Learners (ELLs) in U.S. public schools. Of those, 77 percent are native Spanish speakers. NWEA’s Spanish MAP assessments help to illuminate the learning needs of a growing population of Spanish-speaking students and identify whether they are attributed to language barriers or true learning gaps. The NWEA offering provides Spanish assessments in math, reading comprehension, oral reading fluency, and foundational reading skills. The MAP Spanish assessments help track growth, measure performance, assess early literacy skills, and provide educators with the data they need to guide student learning.

“With a growing population of Spanish-speaking students, educators need to know what their students’ learning needs are and if students are growing in the languages of instruction,” said Chris Minnich, CEO of NWEA. “Educators have come to know and trust MAP Suite as a comprehensive assessment system that provides high-quality, trustworthy data about what students know now and what they are ready to learn next. These new Spanish assessments will help to ensure that educators have that same powerful data for Spanish-speaking students, and remove any confounding variables hiding the truth about a student’s true academic abilities.”

MAP Spanish is designed to support educators regardless of the approach used for Spanish-speaking students in their district, whether it be English-only instruction for ELLs, bilingual instruction, or dual-language immersion instruction. Approximately 60,000 students in over 100 districts have been piloting the MAP Spanish reading assessments this school year.

“Ensuring that we are providing the same measurable and valid data for Spanish-speaking students is paramount to equitable assessment,” said Adam Withycombe, D.Ed., Manager of Content Design and Development for Spanish assessment at NWEA and a previous bilingual instructor in Spanish. “Schools have a variety of different needs when it comes to native assessments, whether the goal is to simply learn English or to teach biliteracy, where students graduate knowing how to read and write in both English and Spanish. MAP Spanish assessments can be used to provide accurate data on where students are in their learning no matter the approach taken and help separate language proficiency vs. academic performance.”

NWEA’s MAP Spanish assessments include Spanish MAP Growth Reading, Spanish MAP Growth Math, and Spanish MAP Reading Fluency, and are part of the MAP Suite, a comprehensive assessment system with multiple ways to utilize assessment to improve instruction. MAP Spanish assessments enable educators to understand where all Spanish-speaking students are in their learning by providing a valid measure of reading, math and early literacy skills. MAP Spanish is ideally suited for native Spanish speakers and students receiving Spanish instruction.

NWEA will be showcasing its MAP Spanish assessments at the National Association for Bilingual Education (NABE) conference at booth 313 on March 7-9, 2019 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. At the conference, Dr. Teresa Cabal Krastel, Ph.D., Spanish Solution Lead at NWEA, will present “Biliteracy Toolkit: Using Reading Assessments to Track Students' Path to Biliteracy” on Friday, March 8, 2019, from 11:40 AM – 12:30 PM in Fiesta 8 meeting room.

About NWEA
NWEA® is a mission-driven, not-for-profit organization that supports students and educators worldwide by creating assessment solutions that precisely measure growth and proficiency—and provide insights to help tailor instruction. For more than 40 years, NWEA has developed innovative Pre-K–12 assessments, professional learning that fosters educators’ ability to accelerate student learning, and research that supports assessment validity and data interpretation. Educators in more than 10,000 schools, districts, and education agencies in 141 countries rely on our flagship interim assessment, MAP® Growth™; our progress monitoring and skills mastery tool, MAP® Skills™; and our reading fluency and comprehension assessment, MAP® Reading Fluency™.

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