Emergency Medical Waivers

Ohio’s annual state tests are required by federal and state law, and although Ohio expects all students to take part in state tests, there may be rare circumstances in which students cannot take one or more assessments during the testing window dates because of medical emergencies.

In these cases of medical emergencies, districts and community schools must apply for an emergency medical waiver. Superintendent, superintendent designees, principals, test coordinators and Education Management Information System (EMIS) coordinators can enter information into the application form through the online system between May 24 and June 11, 2021. These administrators will have access within their OH ID accounts to a Forms link and should follow the prompts provided. Applications for the 2021 emergency medical waivers were due by June 11, 2021. The submission window for 2020-2021 has now closed. Districts and schools will be notified of application status in July. 

Results from state tests are used within the accountability system and published with Ohio’s School Report Cards. While Ohio is currently seeking an accountability waiver from the U.S. Department of Education due to the on-going impacts of COVID-19 during the 2020-2021 school year, it is still important to review performance on state tests for recovery and improvement planning. The emergency medical waiver, when approved, removes the untested students’ results when calculating the Performance Index scores and the improvement scores as part of the Gap Closing Component. An approved emergency medical waiver does not exempt a student from having to complete one of the required pathways to graduate.

As part of the waiver application, an administrator must answer questions about the medical emergency and may upload supporting documentation. The emergency medical waiver application should be used in situations that arise during the testing windows, including the make-up test windows, such as unexpected or worsening illness, or physical injury immediately before or during the testing window.

Although superintendents, superintendent designees, principals, test coordinators and EMIS coordinators can enter the information into the application form, the official submission to the Department requires the superintendent or superintendent designee to approve and submit the completed form. The Department will review only forms that have received this official local approval and submission by the superintendent or designee.

Direct all questions about emergency medical waivers to Jackie Seward at (614) 387 – 7570 or email Jackie.Seward@education.ohio.gov.

More information on the Department’s guidance for Spring Testing in 2021 is available on the Reset Restart webpage, including details on the expanded testing windows and emphasis on health and safety of students and staff.  
 


Frequently Asked Questions


  • Where do I find the application for 2021? When is it due?
    Superintendent, superintendent designees, principals, test coordinators and Education Management Information System (EMIS) coordinators can enter information into the application through the online system between May 24 and June 11, 2021. These administrators will have access within their OH ID accounts to a Forms link and should follow the prompts provided. Applications for the 2021 emergency medical waivers are due June 11, 2021.
 
  • Who has access to submit the waiver application?
    Superintendent, superintendent designees, principals, test coordinators and Education Management Information System (EMIS) coordinators can submit applications through the online system. However, it is crucial that the superintendent or superintendent’s designee approve and submit the waiver application. The Department will only review forms that have received this official local approval and submission by the superintendent or designee.
 
  • What questions are on the waiver application?
    The waiver application has prompts to complete student information, the tests in which you are requesting an emergency medical waiver, the testing dates for the school or district, the issue resulting in the student being unable to test, and any supplemental documentation.
 
  • How will we know when the applications have been approved or denied?
    Upon final review of applications by the medical waiver review team an email will be sent to the district superintendent indicating the status of the application.   
     
  • Should I submit a waiver application for a student due to COVID-19?
    Many students have continued learning in remote scenarios and have declined to return to buildings for testing. This alone is not a reason to submit an emergency medical waiver. Please refer to the Spring 2021 Testing information for details on reporting for students who opt not to test this year due to COVID-19, and the flexibility recommended by the Department. If a student has been exposed to COVID-19 and is required to quarantine for 14 days, it may be appropriate to request an emergency medical waiver if the quarantine period captures the entire testing window available. If a student has tested positive for COVID-19 and is recovering in quarantine, it may be appropriate to request an emergency medical waiver as this would be an unexpected sudden on-set of illness if it occurs during the testing window period.
 
  • Does districts have the option to extend their testing window? Yes. Ohio law passed by the legislature in late March provided some flexibility to districts that need to test outside their test window due to COVID-related issues. A district can extend testing for students as long as students are tested before the state test window closes.
 
  • I have a few more questions. Who can I contact? Direct all questions about emergency medical waivers to Jackie Seward at (614) 387 – 7570 or email Jackie.Seward@education.ohio.gov.
 

 

Last Modified: 6/25/2021 9:27:32 AM