[nobe-l] Woodcock Johnson

Caitlin Hernandez caitlinh4590 at gmail.com
Wed Feb 28 20:16:52 UTC 2018

Thanas, Ashley. FYI, everyone, I'm a credentialed special education teacher (masters in special education and a credential in mild to moderate disabilities) and I do NOT teach blind or low vision students. 
Brailling the WJ or adapting it would not be sufficiient, as the battery includes many, many subtests, which rely largely on students pointing, drawing, and responding nonverbally. The test changes as students respond (for example, the progression alters depending on what students get correctly and not). Haghing two people administering a test changes the test conditions and renders the results invalid. 
Hope this is helpful.

- Caitlin
Sent From My BrailleNote Touch

On Feb 28, 2018 11:40 AM, Ashley Bramlett via NOBE-L <nobe-l at nfbnet.org> wrote:
> Caitlin, 
> Well, I'm not an educator either, but have considered it. The stress and 
> negative attitudes of trying the ed major caused me to change it. 
> I have a BA though from Marymount university in liberal studies which is my 
> combined degree of social sciences and communication. 
> When you say you are a resource specialist, do you mean you are a special 
> education assistant? 
> Are you assisting in a  low vision resource room? Those don't exist much 
> anymore since most blind and low vision kids are fully mainstreamed. 
> What was your background? Just wanted a sense of what you do. 
> I have low vision and this question brings back memories. I was administered 
> the woodcock johnson. 
> Unfortunately, I don't have many suggestions for you. I think you are doing 
> the right thing 
> I would also swop duties if I were in your shoes. 
> I don't see why that cannot be an accommodation. I am glad the union is 
> helping and they are looking at an attorney. 
> I know legally blind teachers of the vision impaired in our school system. 
> To perform visual functioning testing, they either swop duties or use a 
> sighted assistant. 
> I can understand the resistance to brailling it. 
> But, you should be able to use a sighted person alongside you to help you 
> with visuals such as describing what students do. 
> Would they allow you to put raised letters on the cards students have to 
> see? 
> This sounds like a tough challenge. 
> I'm sorry to hear you are not going to be accommodated. 
> Barriers like this are why its hard to be employed. 
> I see no reason why you should have to switch jobs since you indicated that 
> performing this task is not in the job description. 
> Keep us posted, 
> Ashley 
> -----Original Message----- 
> From: Caitlin Hernandez via NOBE-L 
> Sent: Wednesday, February 28, 2018 10:02 AM 
> To: nobe-l at nfbnet.org 
> Cc: Caitlin Hernandez 
> Subject: [nobe-l] Woodcock Johnson 
> Hi All, 
> I'm a totally blind, Braille-reading, first-year Resource specialist 
> for fifth and sixth graders in San Francisco. For students' triennial 
> IEPs, we use an assessment tool called the Woodcock Johnson, and I've 
> been looking into a way to make this accessible for the past year or 
> so. We've just heard from the company itself that even Brailling the 
> test or my administering it alongside a credentialed sighted person 
> who can assist with the visual bits (students need to do a lot of 
> silent pointing, for example) is not possible and will compromise the 
> validity of the test. 
> Up to this point, I've simply been swapping duties with the other 
> Resource specialists we have on our K8 campus; I run pull-out groups 
> for them while they do my assessments. This has worked fine, but the 
> district is saying that they can't allow this to be an official 
> accommodation, since it adds job functions to someone else's job. 
> They're also saying that, since I technically cannot perform an 
> executive function of the Resource Specialist position, they want me 
> to move to a general-education classroom next year: something I don't 
> particularly want to do at this time, and for which I'm not 
> appropriately credentialed. 
> I'm doing my homework on all this, and my Union representative is in 
> the process of getting an attorney. Further, in the job description 
> for Resource Specialist, it doesn't specify that the teacher must be 
> capable of administering the Woodcock Johnson. However, I promised to 
> ask around among my fellow blind teachers to see if anyone has run 
> into this issue or has another workaround for the Woodcock Johnson, or 
> any other similar modes of assessment which are largely visual and 
> unusable for blind educators. 
> Thanks so much for any advice. 
> All best, 
> Caitlin 
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