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Identify and Address Risks Associated With the Project

It is important to identify any known changes that might occur over the life of the project. Two obvious ones are changes in funding or in legislative authorization, either of which could require major program changes. Other special circumstances, such as the implementation of new tests or new versions of existing ones, should be mentioned. If these events are likely to occur during the contract, bidders should be made aware of these potential or planned changes to the scope of work.

Crafting the Request for Proposals/Invitation to Bid

Once planning for the RFP has been completed, it is time to prepare the actual RFP. The steps involved are described ahead.

Summarize the Program History

It is helpful for bidders to have the background of the program or initiative for which they are bidding, helping them to understand how their work fits within the context of the sponsoring agency and its constituents. Provide a description of the various program components in the RFP, including content areas and grades assessed, the nature of instruments used, types of results reported from each and to whom, and the purposes and uses of the tests. A brief legislative and policy history is also of value.

It may be helpful to use tables to summarize each program component, such as grades and content areas assessed and the types of tests used. This section should indicate whether examinees take a common form or matrix sampling is used. If the latter, indicate the number of forms to be used at each grade and subject area.

Another table could show how many items of each type are to be developed, how many are administered and how many are released annually.

It is important to provide these types of information since bidders will use them to prepare cost estimates. Providing standard sets of information will help ensure that the cost estimates from different bidders are comparable.

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