Your monthly update on all things MS-CPAS!
November 2018 Issue
Fall Forward

For us in Mississippi, November typically brings cooler temperatures, the end of daylight savings time, colorful foliage, and Thanksgiving break. For those of us in education, it also means we are getting closer to midyear in our schools and beginning to prepare for fall MS-CPAS testing.

The saying "fall forward" reminds me of a quote from a 2011 University of Pennsylvania keynote speech by Denzel Washington in which he said, "And when you fall throughout life and maybe even tonight...remember this: Fall forward." This quote embodies a mindset we, as educators, are hoping to instill in each one of our students,  as well as remember in our own daily walks as teachers. We need to take risks and be willing to fail.

For our educational technology focus of the month, I wanted to discuss the use of augmented reality/virtual reality (AR/VR) in education. These concepts have gained more momentum in our space due to the work of Google, Microsoft, and others. Goldman Sachs predicts organizations will invest more than $700 million to create AR/VR educational services. zSpace is another vendor adapting its products for use in career and technical education (CTE). zSpace has created virtual experiences in the CTE pathways of automotive service, health science, agriculture and environmental science and technologies, and welding. EdSurge wrote about the experiences of Florida CTE teacher using zSpace in his classroom in a January article . Judge for yourself if using technology like AR/VR could be a fit in your center!

Remember to reflect on the successes and setbacks for this year with the mindset you are going to fall forward!

Sean Owen, PhD
Assessment Manager

Important Dates

Fall Verification Deadline..............                        Nov. 9
Fall Testing...................................                Nov. 12-15
Makeup Testing............................                     Nov. 16
National Certification Testing.......          Nov. 12-Dec. 7

MS-CPAS Updates
Like many of you, we on the assessment team are busy preparing for fall testing. Verification tools opened Oct. 29. Some of you have already moved through the verification process. If you have not yet uploaded your rosters and verified your students, you have until Nov. 9 to take care of these very important steps. Secondary school test coordinators will find queries and links to the 2018-2019 CTE Testing Manual on our MS-CPAS page, and postsecondary school test coordinators can access the postsecondary student roster spreadsheet and the 2018-2019 Postsecondary CTE Testing Manual on the postsecondary assessment page. Our CTE testing manuals are helpful guides as you navigate assessment processes.
If you are not finding the answer to your question in the manual or on our website, please know that we are here to help. You can contact us by sending a Help Desk ticket or by emailing us at Our goal is to respond to Help Desk requests within 24 hours. For more urgent requests, you can reach us by calling 662.325.2510.
As you train proctors and test administrators, please keep in mind there is a shorter version of the CTE Testing Manual called Information for Test Administrators and Proctors you can provide to staff members who help proctor or administer the MS-CPAS. This easier-to-print resource contains the test administration information from the larger manual. You'll find the link to this booklet on the RCU's assessment page under MS-CPAS Resources.

National Certifications Updates
The ProStart National Certificate of Achievement is an optional, online certification available to first- and second-year culinary arts students who obtain a passing score on their MS-CPAS exams. To accommodate those districts that would like this certification to be available to their students, we ask that you take this very brief survey and indicate the name of your school district, whether your students will seek ProStart certification, and what version of the online assessment you will need. The deadline for completion of this survey is Nov. 9.
If you are planning to do ProStart or NCCER testing during the 2018 fall national certification testing window (Nov. 12-Dec. 7), please send a Help Desk ticket to the RCU to ensure your NCCER assessments and ProStart vouchers are available. Remember, the information of students who will take the MS-CPAS exam or any national certifications should be uploaded to the RCU portal for verification by Nov. 9 for fall testing and March 22, 2019 for spring testing.

Performance-Based Assessment
Do you have a student for whom PBA has been especially beneficial?
We'd love to hear about it! Share your story by clicking here.
Webinar Wednesdays

On the second Wednesday of each month, the RCU communications team will host webinars to help teachers and administrators promote their CTE programs. The second in this series will be held 11 a.m. Nov. 14 and will spotlight Connections and School Focus, the two magazines produced by the RCU for the Mississippi Department of Education. Topics will include:
  • How to submit prewritten stories for publication
  • Pitching feature story ideas to RCU staff writers
  • Photography and cutline writing essentials
See below for the dates and topics of future discussions. If you have any questions, please contact either Amanda Gronewold or Carl Smith
C Spire Partnership

A new cyber education center will build upon the RCU's longstanding work in K-12 computer science education and teacher training and recruitment. Its first project is the C Spire Software Development Pathway. 

Key Contacts
Assessment Manager ..............................
IAD Meetings and Training Events...........
National Certification ...............................
PBA .........................................................
Research and Standard Setting................

Have assessment needs not addressed in this issue?
Create a Help Desk ticket, and we'll get right on it! 

662.325.2510 |