Hello all:

A general update for all around the progress and process with the SBAC Tech Readiness Tool.

SBAC refers to the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium.  This consortium is the one of which Vermont is a member.  This consortium is our version of the online assessment that will take the place of our current NECAP testing in the SY2014-15.  In preparation for that assessment, Pearson, a vendor no doubt recognized by many, has developed a Tech Readiness Tool  (TRT) for states to run over the course of 6 "windows" between now and the online assessment implementation in SY2014-15.

The first window has opened this week and someone from your Supervisory Union has been contacted as the primary contact.   Many of those primary contacts are members of this list serv, so you know who you are.  (Note, private schools and public academies are included in this work, they will receive notification next week)

This email is intended as informational only, and is NOT a call for you to do anything unless you have been contacted by me OR your primary contact person at the SU level.    (  I do realize there are significant numbers of folks on break this week.. so anticipate more communication to be moving on the local level beginning next week).

To give you a brief look at what is happening:

1.       The month of May is our "window" for collecting this data.  It is hoped that all schools can have the data uploaded by May 31.   I will be encouraging as this moves forward so we all meet this deadline.

2.       Primary contacts have the ability to create users at the school level for using the tool to collect data.  You may be one of the persons that your primary contact solicits to enter data.  There are tools for your assistance in doing this located at the following web page:   Feel free to peruse any of that information to bring yourself up to speed on the collection parameters.

3.       The TRT's prime function is to collect data under three areas:

a.       Broadband capacity at the school level

b.      Device capacity at the school level

c.       Training and Professional development needs for delivering and taking online assessments. (this focus will come in a later window, as this first window is looking to get as much information as possible as to what is "out there" in schools for broadband and device capacity).

4.       The tool has the capability to auto-populate many of the fields from the device perspective, for example, processor, memory, operating system, etc.  With that said, every device in your school does not need to be "touched".  Batch files are available if you wish to enter data that way and the tool allows a "count" to entered for a particular model.  For example.. 25 HP xx computers.. run one with the tool and enter a count of 25.

5.       There are webinars scheduled to assist with this process.  At this time, they are limited to those individuals that will be performing the actual collection, so please don't take a slot unless you have been identified by your local primary contact or you ARE the primary.    The schedule for the webinars follows at the bottom of this page.

On a general note of interest to all, Pearson has just this week announced specs for the hardware that can run the TRT and are slated to be appropriate for the online assessment.  That information and much more about the technology can be found here:

NOTE the Hardware Purchasing Guidelines that could be very helpful in making future purchase decisions.

Webinar schedule:

WEBINAR 1   May 2  10-11 AM
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

WEBINAR 2  May 7  1-2 PM
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

WEBINAR 3 May 8  3-4 PM
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

Any questions?.. feel free to call or email.

Peter Drescher
Education Technology Coordinator
Vermont Department of Education
Integrated Support for Learning Division
120 State St.
Montpelier, VT  05620
Ph.: 802.828.5149
FAX: 802.828.0573
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Twitter:  VTDOE_EdTech