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Content Page Icon Access Points for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities

What are access points?
As part of the revision to the Sunshine State Standards, access points for students with significant cognitive disabilities have been developed. These access points are expectations written for students with significant cognitive disabilities to access the general education curriculum. Embedded in the Sunshine State Standards, access points reflect the core intent of the Standards with reduced levels of complexity. The three levels of complexity include participatory (Pa), supported (Su), and independent (In) with the participatory level being the least complex. The new Florida Alternate Assessment will measure student achievement on the access points in Reading, Writing, Mathematics, and Science.

The access points for the Mathematics Sunshine State Standards were developed through the cooperative efforts of writing teams composed of Florida educators and parents under the direction of staff from the Accommodations and Modifications for Students with Disabilities Project, the Accountability and Assessment for Students with Disabilities Project, and the Florida Department of Education.

 


What criteria are used to determine which students with disabilities should use the Access Points?

The student's individual education plan (IEP) team is responsible for making the determination as to which students will be working on the access points and taking the alternate assessment and which students will be taking the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT). School personnel have been given five guiding questions to use to determine which students will be assessed through the alternate assessment based on the access points. A student's disability category is not the determining factor for which portions of the Standards are used for instruction. If a student is being assessed using the FCAT, he or she should receive instruction using the Standards tested by the FCAT. If the IEP team determines that the student meets the criteria for an alternate assessment, the student will be assessed on the access points.

 

Which subject areas will include Access Points?
Access points are being developed for core academic areas: Reading and Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, and Health and Physical Education. Other subject areas may be added. You can download copies from the access points section or the export and print documents section of this website.

 


Example: Grade 5 Mathematics Benchmark and Access Points (Algebra: Big Idea 2)


Benchmark:
The student will represent addition and subtraction of decimals and fractions with like and unlike denominators using models, place value or properties.


In.
The student will express, represent, and use fractions including halves, fourths, and thirds, as parts of a whole and as parts of a set, using number names.


Su.
The student will identify the relationship between half and whole.


Pa.
The student will respond to a prompt to identify a specified part of an whole.

 

Click here to search and browse the Access Points 

 

For more information about the access points, contact Elise Lynch, Florida Department of Education (elise.lynch@fldoe.org).

 


Adapted from the Florida Department of Education Technical Assistance Paper, K-12: 2007–141, “Revised Sunshine State Standards,” October 26, 2007.



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