Education, From The Capitol To The Classroom

Testing Expert Reviewing ISTEP+ Validity To Testify Monday

    On April 29 and April 30, server issues at testing company CTB/McGraw Hill disrupted thousands of Indiana students' online ISTEP+ exams.

    StateImpact Photo Illustration by Kyle Stokes

    Server issues at testing company CTB/McGraw Hill disrupted thousands of Indiana students' online ISTEP+ exams on April 29 and 30.

    Indiana educators could learn Monday whether students scores on this year’s disrupted online ISTEP+ exams will count toward their schools’ letter grade ratings.

    The Department of Education hired the Center for Assessment’s Richard Hill six weeks ago to review the results of this year’s ISTEP+ test. State lawmakers have called Hill, a New Hampshire-based testing expert, to appear before a legislative committee at the Statehouse this afternoon.

    Hill has been combing through the data to find out if the server problems that caused at least 78,000 Indiana students’ testing websites to lock up had any impact on their final scores.

    Executives for testing company CTB/McGraw-Hill have already apologized for the computer issues that caused the interruptions. The company faces financial penalties of at least $613,000.

    State superintendent Glenda Ritz says she’s offered districts flexibility in using the test results to determine teachers’ evaluation scores, as state law mandates some link between ISTEP+ scores and teacher pay.

    But Hill’s testimony Monday might provide an answer to another lingering question: Can state officials use the test scores in calculating the letter grade ratings for the state’s public schools?

    Ritz is also scheduled to speak at the hearing, which begins at 1 p.m. in Senate Chambers. The committee meeting will be broadcast live on the web. Follow @kystokes for updates.


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