Request for Proposals (rfp) cn140284



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California Department of Education

Request for Proposals (RFP) - CN140284

Page of 118




REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS (RFP):

English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC)
April 1, 2015–December 31, 2018

Proposal Cost Limit: $40,820,000.00

Bidder’s Conference

Friday, December 12, 2014, 2:30 p.m. PT

California Department of Education

1430 N Street, Room 4101

Sacramento, CA 95814



Intent to Submit Proposals Due Date

Mail, hand-deliver, or e-mail

By Monday, December 15, 2014, 12 noon PT

Attn: Kerri Wong

Assessment Development and Administration Division

California Department of Education

1430 N Street, Suite 4409

Sacramento, CA 95814

E-mail: kewong@cde.ca.gov

916-319-0333



Proposals Due Date

Mail or hand-deliver

By Friday, January 23, 2015, 12 noon PT

Attn: Kerri Wong

Assessment Development and Administration Division

California Department of Education

1430 N Street, Suite 4409

Sacramento, CA 95814

California Department of Education

December 2014

~ This page intentionally left blank to facilitate double-sided printing ~


TABLE OF CONTENTS
1. PURPOSE 5

2. BACKGROUND 5

3. SCOPE OF PROJECT 9

Task 1 – Coordination and Communications with the CDE 10

Task 2 – Reports, Final Document Specifications, and Test Security 16

Task 3 – Customer Support 20

Task 4 – Development of the Initial and Summative Assessments 23
Task 5 – Administration and Training 45
Task 6 – Scoring, Analysis, and Reporting 59
4. GENERAL PROPOSAL INFORMATION 85

5. PROPOSAL SPECIFICATIONS 91

6. EVALUATION PROCESS 103

7. AWARD AND PROTEST 105

8. DISPOSITION OF PROPOSALS 105

9. STANDARD CONDITIONS OF SERVICES 106


10. SPECIAL TERMS AND CONDITIONS ………………………………………………106

11. BUDGET DETAIL AND PAYMENT PROVISIONS……………………………….....110

12. ADDITIONAL PROVISIONS……………………………………………………………112

APPENDIXES


  1. Smarter Balanced Technology Requirements

  2. Summary of CELDT Test Components with Items Aligned to the 2012 ELD Standards

  3. Data Elements

  4. Number of Testing Materials Ordered

  5. Codes for Student Demographic Data

  6. Reporting Expectations for Special Studies and Research Projects

ATTACHMENTS



  1. Bidder Certification Sheet

  2. Sample Technical Proposal Staffing Labor Hours Worksheet

  3. Sample Cost Worksheet

  4. California Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE) Program Requirements

  5. Contractor Certification Clauses

  6. Federal Certifications Darfur Contracting Act Certification

7a. Darfur Contracting Act Certification Supplemental

  1. Bidder References

  2. Small Business Preference Sheet

  3. Attachment Check List

  4. Intent to Submit a Proposal

  5. Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Statement

  6. California Department of Education Computer Security Policy

  7. California State Travel Program

  8. Technical Evaluation Criteria (Phase I, II and III and Cost Proposal Evaluation)

English Language Proficiency Assessments for California

Request for Proposals


1. PURPOSE
This Request For Proposals (RFP) invites proposals from eligible bidders (See RFP Section 4.1 Bidder Eligibility.) to conduct the development, administration, scoring, reporting, and analysis of the paper-pencil ELPAC which will include initial identification and summative assessments. The current state test of English language proficiency (ELP) is the California English Language Development Test (CELDT), which will continue to be administered by the CELDT contractor until the ELPAC is ready for operational administration. The paper-pencil version of the ELPAC is scheduled to be operational in 2017–18 and subject to approval by the State Board of Education (SBE).

Approval of a contract initiated as a result of this RFP shall be contingent upon funding and program authorization provided to and by the California Department of Education (CDE). Funding is described in Section 4.5 of this RFP. The successful Technical Proposal for the English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC), along with the successful bidder’s Cost Proposal, will be incorporated into the final contract, which is a public document. All proposals and related documents submitted in response to this RFP shall become the property of the State of California. Pursuant to the Public Contract Code and all other applicable laws, all proposals and related documents will be made available in their entirety for public inspection and reproduction. Submission of a proposal is the acceptance of these terms.

2. BACKGROUND
2.1 Legislation
California Education Code (EC) sections 60810 et seq. were originally enacted by Chapter 936 of the statutes of 1997 by which the Legislature required the State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SSPI) and the SBE to select or develop a test that assesses the ELP of students whose primary language is a language other than English. Beginning with the 2000–01 school year, the new law required the assessment of ELP to be done upon initial enrollment and annually thereafter until the local educational agency (LEA) reclassified the student. State law required the state test of ELP to be aligned to the state adopted English Language Development (ELD) Standards (California EC Section 60810[c][7]). As a result, the CELDT was developed based on the 1999 ELD Standards. The Legislature also required that the assessment be conducted during a period of time determined by the SSPI and the SBE. In addition, federal law required the state test of ELP to be aligned to state adopted ELD Standards, per the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), Title I, Section 1111(b); and Title III, sections 3113(b)(2) and 3212(a)(2)(B)(iv). Since the 2000–01 school year, the CELDT has been the ELP assessment for the state. Approximately 1.4 million students in California take the CELDT each year. Aggregated results of the test are required to be posted on the CDE DataQuest Web site at http://celdt.cde.ca.gov/index.asp for public access.

In November 2012, the SBE adopted the 2012 ELD Standards aligned to the California Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for English-language arts (ELA), and the CDE is transitioning to the ELPAC, which will be aligned to the 2012 ELD Standards.


EC Section 60811 (as amended by Assembly Bill [AB] 899 in 2013) requires the 2012 ELD Standards to be linked with academic content standards for mathematics and science in order to meet state law and federal accountability requirements and may result in modifications to the 2012 ELD Standards. The CDE will advise the contractor of any modifications needed per AB 899. By August 2015, the SBE must approve the modifications to the 2012 ELD Standards in order to correspond to the CCSS for mathematics and the California Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).
EC sections 313 and 60810 (as amended by Senate Bill 201 in 2013) requires two significant changes to the current state ELP assessment program: (1) the ELPAC will consist of separate tests for the purposes of initial identification and annual summative assessment, and (2) the annual assessment window will be moved to a four-month period after January 1, as determined by the SSPI, with the approval of the SBE. The timeline and progress in developing the ELPAC is contingent upon legislative authority and additional funding each fiscal year. Therefore, the proposal must specify that the successful bidder is committed to working flexibly with the CDE, as changes and contract amendments may occur during the life of the contract. Furthermore, the successful bidder must acknowledge its commitment to completing all of the requirements specified herein and must describe the processes to accomplish all of the tasks, subtasks, and activities included in this RFP. Guidance from the CDE must be sought during all work performed under this contract. (See RFP Section 3 Scope of Project.)

2.2 Regulations

During this contract period, the regulations that will govern the ELPAC (hereinafter referred to as the ELPAC Regulations) will be written and submitted to the SBE for approval in order to begin the rulemaking process. Emergency ELPAC Regulations may be enacted for the standalone field test administration. Current regulations for the CELDT, Title 5, California Code of Regulations (5 CCR) sections 11510–11517.5, can be found on the CDE CELDT Web page at http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/el/ under the “CELDT Info” tab.

In accordance with efforts by the State of California to reduce paper waste, information that is available on the Internet will only be referenced in this RFP with a URL link, and will not be appended to the RFP.
2.3 Student Data
To enable California to meet federal accountability requirements, EC Section 60900 requires: (1) the assignment of a Statewide Student Identifier (SSID) as an individual, yet non-personally identifiable number to each kindergarten through grade twelve (K–12) student enrolled in a California public school and (2) the establishment of the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System (CALPADS) that includes statewide assessment data, enrollment data, teacher assignment data, and other elements required to meet federal reporting requirements per the ESEA of 2001, and state requirements per EC Section 60900.
The CALPADS system is designed to store assessment results, including the CELDT, and will be modified to collect information on the ELPAC, as well as much of the demographic data needed for state and federal accountability. A description of this system can be found on the CDE CALPADS Web page at http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/sp/cl/index.asp.

2.4 ELPAC Overview
In June 2013, the CDE and the CELDT contractor convened educators, assessment specialists, and researchers for a two-day Item Alignment Meeting as part of an Item Alignment Study. The purpose of the meeting was to: (1) review a representative sample of CELDT items, (2) determine the alignment of the items to the 2012 ELD Standards, and (3) develop guidelines for aligning the remaining CELDT items not included in the representative sample.

The findings from the Item Alignment Study indicated that approximately 26 percent of the CELDT items analyzed were aligned to at least one of the 2012 ELD Standards and potentially could be used for the ELPAC initial assessment. The study determined that the CELDT items were aligned only to 6 of 13 Part I standards; there were no items aligned to the Part II standards. The CELDT Item Alignment to the 2012 ELD Standards Report is available on the CDE CELDT Resources Web page at http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/el/resources.asp. This proposal and subsequent contract will require item development for standards in both Parts I and II of the 2012 ELD Standards.

In March 2014, the CDE convened the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) to begin developing blueprint guidelines for creating the ELPAC test blueprints for the initial and the summative assessments. The TAG is comprised of professionals with expertise in the areas of psychometrics, language acquisition, linguistics, the 2012 ELD Standards, student assessment, and test and item development.
The first activity for the successful bidder selected as a result of this RFP is to use the blueprint guidelines to develop the ELPAC (K–12) test blueprints. The ELPAC test blueprints will serve as the basis for writing new test questions for a paper-pencil format for both the initial and summative assessments.
In order to administer an initial assessment to identify English learners (ELs), the successful bidder shall develop test questions aligned to the 2012 ELD Standards in the 2015–16 fiscal year, administer a field test in the fall of 2016, and administer an operational, paper-pencil ELPAC initial assessment for LEAs to use starting in July 2017. The same operational form of the initial assessment will be administered from July 1 through June 30 of each school year of the contract period. The following is a tentative timeline of high-level tasks for the initial assessment:
Table 1. Tentative Timeline for the Development and Administration of the Initial Assessment


April 2015–June 2015

  • K–12 test blueprints (April 2015)

  • Item development

July 2015–June 2016


  • Pilot testing items and item types

  • Training to administer and score the 2016–17 field test (FT) (March–August 2016)

July 2016–June 2017

  • Stand-alone FT (fall 2016)

  • Performance level descriptors

  • Standard setting of cut point (winter 2016–17)

  • Constructing the operational paper-pencil test

July 2017–June 2018

  • Operational paper-pencil test

July 2018–December 2018

  • Technical report

  • Coordination with future contractor

  • Contract ends December 31, 2018

For the ELPAC summative assessment, a new edition must be prepared and administered annually for each grade or grade span for grades K–12. (See RFP Section 4.9 for the definition of “edition.”) Each edition of the summative assessment will be administered during a four-month period after January 1 of each year, as determined by the SSPI, with the approval of the SBE. The goal is to field-test the paper-pencil summative assessment in spring 2017 and administer the fully operational paper-pencil ELPAC summative assessment in spring 2018. The following is a tentative timeline of high-level tasks for the summative assessment:

Table 2. Tentative Timeline for the Development and Administration of the Summative Assessment



April 2015–June 2015

  • K–12 test blueprints (April 2015)

  • Item development

July 2015–June 2016

  • Item development and pilot testing items and item types

July 2016–June 2017

  • Training to administer and score the stand-alone FT

  • Stand-alone FT (spring 2017)

  • Performance level descriptors

  • Constructing the operational paper-pencil test

July 2017–June 2018

  • Training to administer and score the 2017–18 operational paper-pencil test

  • Operational paper-pencil test

  • Standard setting of cut points after first operational summative assessment

July 2018–December 2018

  • Technical report

  • Coordination with future contractor

  • Contract ends December 31, 2018

This RFP invites proposals for the development and administration of the paper-pencil ELPAC assessments. Approval of a contract initiated as a result of this RFP shall be contingent upon funding and program authorization provided to and by the CDE. The CDE may extend the contract awarded pursuant to this RFP process, as an option to renew, to include the development and administration of ELPAC computer-based assessments (CBA). The CDE plans to request additional funding related to developing the ELPAC CBA for both the initial and summative assessments.

In addition, and contingent upon approval and available funding, the CDE intends to release a separate RFP for the ELPAC Technical Hosting Solution project to support the ELPAC CBA. Being awarded the contract for the ELPAC administration does not preclude the successful bidder pursuant to this RFP process from submitting a proposal for the ELPAC Technical Hosting Solution project.
3. SCOPE OF PROJECT
As set forth in Sections 5.1 Technical Proposal Requirements and 5.3 Cost Proposal Requirements, the bidder must plan and budget for the costs of all tasks, including subtasks and activities. The Technical Proposal may not contain any cost information.
The proposed term of the Contract to be awarded under this RFP is from April 1, 2015 through December 31, 2018, with two one-year options to renew for the periods January 1, 2019 through December 31, 2019 and January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020, under the same terms and conditions. The term of the contract January 1, 2015 through December 31, 2018, covering five fiscal years, (Refer to RFP Section 4.9 for the definition of “fiscal year”) is a total of 46 months. The fiscal years defined in this RFP are as follows:
2014–2015: April 1, 2015–June 30, 2015

2015–2016: July 1, 2015–June 30, 2016

2016–2017: July 1, 2016–June 30, 2017

2017–2018: July 1, 2017–June 30, 2018

2018–2019: July 1, 2018–December 31, 2018

This RFP seeks proposals addressing four main tasks:

Task 1 – Coordination and Communications with the CDE

Task 2 – Reports, Final Document Specifications, and Test Security

Task 3 – Customer Support

Task 4 – Development of the Initial and Summative Assessments

Task 5 – Administration and Training

Task 6 – Scoring, Analysis, and Reporting

TASK 1 – COORDINATION AND COMMUNICATIONS WITH THE CDE
REQUIREMENTS
This section of the technical proposal must acknowledge the bidder’s commitment to completing all the requirements specified below in Task 1 and must provide a description of the approach and methodology by which the bidder will accomplish all the associated subtasks and activities. The technical proposal must contain sufficient detail to convey the bidder’s knowledge of the subjects and skills necessary to successfully complete the project as stated in Task 1. The successful bidder must adhere to all of the following requirements:
3.1.1 Overlap of Contracts and Continuity of Assessments
The proposal must describe the process that will be used for the effective and seamless transition to the next contractor. The successful bidder awarded the ELPAC contract, pursuant to this RFP process, must cooperate fully with the CDE and the current or any future contractors.
Beginning as early as April 1, 2015 through December 31, 2018, the 2015–18 the successful bidder must provide administrative tasks to seamlessly continue the California ELP assessments as specified. (See RFP Section 3 Scope of Project.)
The 2015–18 the successful bidder must cooperate fully with the CDE and any future contractor selected by the CDE (e.g., amending the contract or transitioning to a new contractor for the administration of the ELPAC). In addition, the 2015–18 successful bidder is to have staff available to work with the next contractor on transitional aspects of the program. See table 3 below.

Table 3. Major ELPAC Deliverables by Edition



ELPAC
Edition


Develop Training Workshop
Materials


Provide Training Workshops

Develop Test Materials and Manuals

Printing/

Distribution System

Scoring and Score Reports

Reporting, Data Files and Annual Results

Technical Reports

2017–18

2015–18 successful bidder

2015–18 successful bidder

2015–18 successful bidder

2015–18 successful bidder

2015–18 successful bidder

2015–18 successful bidder

2015–18 successful bidder

2018–20

2015–18 successful bidder


(amendment or new RFP)*

2015–18 successful bidder

(amendment or new RFP)*

(amendment or new RFP)*

(amendment or new RFP)*

(amendment or new RFP)*

*If an amendment for the 2015–18 contract is not approved by the CDE, a new RFP will be released in 2017.
If an amendment to extend the 2015–18 contract is not approved by March 2018, then the 2015–18 successful bidder must deliver to the next contractor finalized test versions and all electronic data files, file layouts, reports, Web applications, all supporting documentation, and all other testing and related materials developed for the ELPAC initial and summative assessments. Table 4 indicates the file formats that must be used for electronic deliverables. Data must be provided with appropriate encryption via secure File Transfer Protocol (FTP). 
Table 4. File Formats of Electronic Deliverables


Deliverable

File Format

Data

Fixed-length; comma separated values (csv) format; Structured Query Language (SQL) Server 2012 Enterprise Edition backup file or SQL Server 2012 Enterprise Edition .MDF file; Extensible Markup Language (XML)


Reports

Microsoft (MS) Word and Adobe Acrobat (upon prior CDE approval)

Web Applications

ASPX*

Test Forms

Adobe Acrobat and InDesign

Braille Special Test Versions

Readable by Braille 2000 with .abt or .bml extensions

Large Print Special Test Versions

MS Word and Adobe Acrobat (upon prior CDE approval)

CD-ROM Special Test Versions

.pdf

Audio CD

Windows Media File or MP4

Item Response Data

Fixed-length and delimited files

Item Graphics

.tif (or .tiff), .gif, and .eps

* Subject to change based on CDE Web posting standards.

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