Earlier this month, we touched on how can teachers and schools get better data on learners with disabilities, and some key findings on STS’s work on the All Children Reading: A Grand Challenge for Development project.
On October 31, STS’s former Deputy Director of Research and Evaluation Anne Laesecke presented findings from the study at the Washington Group’s Annual Meeting. Beyond these findings, there are several important next steps implementers and researchers should consider regarding the CFM-TV.
- The CFM-TV functions as intended for the purpose it was designed for– as a tool to estimate disability prevalence in populations. The CFM-TV did not perform well for identifying individual learners as having a disability and should not be used for such purposes. As education programs consider using the CFM-TV as a disability data collection tool moving forward, establishing the purpose of that data is a crucial first step.
- Education programs must also use a reading assessment that is valid for learners with different types of disabilities if they want to disaggregate reading outcomes by disability status. Reading assessment validity is affected by any accommodations or adaptations for learners with disabilities. While identifying learners with disabilities is the first step to being able to disaggregate reading outcomes by disability status, the validity of the assessment tool for learners with disabilities is also an important consideration in reporting this type of data.
- Teachers must receive training in making classrooms universally accessible for all learners and providing targeted support for learners with specific needs, such as providing sign language instruction to learners who are deaf. We heard from teachers repeatedly that they needed additional training in this, as they didn’t know how to help children with disabilities in their classrooms after they had been identified.
- Findings from the tool indicate further exploration is needed in the tool’s accuracy in estimating disabilities in psycho-social domains. As other groups test the CFM-TV, incorporating comparisons with medical screenings in psycho-social domains will further strengthen our understanding of best practices in disability identification in these areas.
This post is the second in a two part series on disability prevalence and identification. It was authored by STS’s former Deputy Director of Evaluation and Research, Anne Laesecke. You can find the first post in the series here.