Graduation Alternatives

Expedited Assessment Appeals Waiver

The passage of Engrossed Substitute House Bill (ESHB) 2224 in July 2017 created an expedited appeal process for waiving specific assessment graduation requirements for eligible students in the classes of 2014 through 2018.

Some students in the Classes of 2014 through 2018 may be eligible to have their assessment graduation requirements (English language arts (ELA), math, or both) waived. The waiver requires that the student, through one of several pathways, demonstrate that he/she has attained the skills and knowledge to meet the high school standards and possesses the skills necessary to successfully achieve the college or career goals established in his or her high school and beyond plan.

An approved Expedited Assessment Appeal (EAA) waives the Certificate of Academic Achievement (CAA) or Certificate of Individual Achievement (CIA) assessment graduation requirement one or more content areas. A student who meets graduation assessment requirements with a waiver may be granted a diploma, but without the designation of a CAA or CIA.

Expedited Assessment Appeal Process

To pursue a waiver for one or more assessment graduation requirements, a student’s district must follow the Expedited Assessment Appeal process.

This process requires the following steps:

  1. The student must meet eligibility criteria for an appeal.
    • EAA eligibility criteria are outlined in the “EAA: Student Eligibility Requirements” section of this webpage.
  2. The student must have ALSO demonstrated the necessary skills and knowledge to meet the high school ELA and/or Mathematics assessment standards and to successfully achieve his or her college or career goals.
    • Pathways for demonstrating are outlined in the “EAA: Approval Requirements” section of this webpage.
  3. The student or the student's parent, guardian, or principal initiates an appeal with the district.
    • Those initiating an appeal must provide the district documentation that verifies the student’s pathway (and, as applicable, eligibility).
  4. The district determines which appeals are submitted to OSPI for review and approval.
    • A District Assessment Coordinator (or assigned designee) should only submit an EAA to OSPI if the DAC (or designee) has confirmed that the submission meets the requirements for both eligibility AND approval. This will require a DAC to review verifying documentation.
  5. The district submits the appeal to OSPI using the Expedited Assessment Appeals tool in the Graduation Alternatives application (in EDS).
    • District Assessment Coordinators (and assigned designees) are the only personnel in the district authorized to submit Expedited Assessment Appeals to OSPI.
    • District Assessment Coordinators (and assigned designees) may use OSPI’s Expedited Assessment Appeal Tool – Directions for Use to submit EAAs.
  6. OSPI reviews and (if appropriate) approves submissions that meet eligibility AND approval requirements.
    • For appeals using one of the four designated pathways (A-D), this process will typically take 3 days.
    • For appeals using the “other” pathway (E), a panel of educational professionals will convene monthly to review submission materials and provide recommendations to the Superintendent of Public Instruction.
  7. Districts may view the status (i.e. approved, denied) of appeals submitted in the Expedited Assessment Appeals tool in the Graduation Alternatives application (in EDS).
    • Communication and inquiries regarding the status of a student’s appeal must flow through the District Assessment Coordinator.
  8. If an appeal is approved, a “Print Letter” button will appear at the end of the student record’s row of the Expedited Assessment Appeals tool.
    • By clicking the “Print Letter” button, a pop-up window will appear in a new tab with the student’s waiver approval letter, which the district should print for its records.
    • Waiver approval statuses for applicable students generated in the Graduation Alternatives Application are communicated to the CAA/CIA database on a nightly basis.

EAA: Student Eligibility Requirements

EAA eligibility requirements must be met before a student may attempt an appeal. A student must ALSO meet EAA Approval Requirements (see section below) to be granted an EAA waiver.

A student’s graduation requirement year (as identified in CEDARS) determines his/her EAA eligibility requirements:

  • For the Classes of 2014 through 2017: An eligible student must have completed all other applicable graduation requirements (e.g., all graduation credits, High School and Beyond Plan, etc.).
  • For the Class of 2018: An eligible student must:
    1. Have completed all other applicable graduation requirements (e.g., all graduation credits, High School and Beyond Plan, etc.);
      -AND-
    2. Have attempted an alternative assessment option as established in RCW 28A.655.065 prior to submitting a waiver request. Alternative assessment options include SAT, ACT, AP, or IB tests; GPA comparison; Collections of Evidence submitted by June 2017; or Certificate of Individual Achievement options (for applicable students with IEPs). Documentation may be required to verify an attempt at an alternative.

EAA: Approval Requirements

RCW 28A.655.065 states that an Expedited Assessment Appeals Waiver can only be approved if the eligible student has, through use of the pathways listed below, demonstrated the “the necessary skills and knowledge to meet the high school graduation standard and that the student has the skills necessary to successfully achieve the college or career goals established in his or her high school and beyond plan.”

Pathways for demonstrating include, but are not limited to:
(A) Successful completion of a college level class in the relevant subject area
(B) Admission to a higher education institution or career preparation program
(C) Award of a scholarship for higher education
(D) Enlistment in a branch of the military

Because the pathways for demonstrating are “not limited to” those listed in the law (options A-D), OSPI will allow students to submit descriptions using an “other” pathway to demonstrate these skills and knowledge. For more information, please see OSPI’s EAA “Other” Pathway Guidance Webpage.

Documentation Required for Expedited Assessment Appeals

For all pathways, school districts are expected to retain all verifying documentation within the student’s cumulative file, in accordance with current records retention schedules. At present, the Graduation Alternatives Application’s Expedited Assessment Appeals tool does not allow any upload of documentation. However, “other” pathway submissions may require documentation be sent to OSPI via secure email.

For more details on applicable “other” pathway documentation and the process for sending materials to OSPI, please see OSPI’s EAA “Other” Pathway Guidance Webpage

Resources Related to Expedited Assessment Appeals

 

New!

OSPI Guidance: The Earliest EAA Submission Date for 2018 Students
An Expedited Assessment Appeal (EAA) for any class of 2018 student who is still in the process of earning required credits for graduation may be submitted** providing that the student:

  1. has attempted at least one graduation alternative;
  2. has completed all other graduation requirements, including a High School and Beyond Plan and Washington State History; and
  3. has earned, or is on track to earn, all course credits required for graduation in June 2018. On track to earn course credits can be determined by the district on June 1st, or two weeks prior to the end of the course term, whichever is earlier.

To summarize: The earliest a Districts Assessment Coordinator may submit an Expedited Assessment Appeal for any on track cohort 2018 student is June 1st, or two weeks prior to the end of the course term, whichever is earlier.

**These are submission requirements only; a student must also meet "Waiver Approval Requirements" (see section below) to be granted an EAA Waiver.

   Updated 5/14/2018

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