Maine DOE releases scheduling guidance for new State assessment

To support district and school testing coordinators in their planning for the spring 2015 administration of the Maine Educational Assessment in Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy, the Maine DOE has posted scheduling guidelines on the assessment section of its website.

The new mathematics and ELA/literacy assessment, developed by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC), is different from previous years’ assessments in several ways that may impact the way in which the assessment may be scheduled, including:

  • At grades 3-8, the test is shorter than the previous NECAP assessments and at the high school the test requires more time than the previous SAT assessment.
  • Some schools may need to plan their testing schedules to allow for the sharing of technology devices within and/or across schools.
  • The testing window is comparably long and this year, extends from March 16 through May 29.
  • Due to the adaptive nature of the assessment, all students will not be seeing the same test questions, alleviating test security concerns about students discussing items. This allows for a greater degree of flexibility in the scheduling (e.g., not all students have to take the test on the same days).
  • There are no strict time limits on testing sessions. Estimated times are provided in order to assist scheduling and planning and can be found in the 2015 scheduling guidelines.
  • Once a student begins a test, the open test remains available to the student for an extended period: 45 days for the CAT and 10 days for the performance task.
  • The test delivery tools will allow Test Administrators to monitor the progress of students through the components of the assessment. It is critical that students complete all components of the assessment.

The scheduling guidelines for the MEA for math and ELA/literacy assessment can be found here.

For more information or technical assistance, please contact the Department’s Acting Assessment Coordinator Nancy Godfrey at or 624-6775.

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