Superintendent’s Memo #012-14

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

Department of Education

January 17, 2014

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT:  Exceptions to One Percent Cap on the 2014 Virginia Alternate Assessment Program (VAAP)

Since 2008, the United States Department of Education has not granted exceptions allowing states to exceed the one percent cap on the number of proficient scores on the alternate assessment measuring alternate achievement standards that may be counted toward Virginia’s Accountability System. While the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) may not request permission to exceed the cap on a statewide basis, we are authorized to grant exceptions to school divisions under specified circumstances.

School divisions with VAAP participation data indicating that they will likely exceed the one percent cap are encouraged to examine their data to determine if they might need to apply for an exception. The VDOE will consider requests for exceptions related to (1) small “n” issues or (2) targeted demographic anomalies.

If your data for the 2014 VAAP administration indicate that your division will exceed the one percent cap based upon the above-referenced criteria, please complete the following online application Please find attached a PDF copy of the questions to assist in completing the online survey.

Additional criteria are discussed in the application. The online application should be complete by March 7, 2014.

Questions about this matter may be addressed to Deborah Johnson, educational specialist in the Office of Special Education Instructional Services, by telephone at (804) 371-2725 or by e-mail at Thank you for your cooperation.



  1. Survey Questions (PDF)