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Delays Interrupt Statewide ISTEP Testing
Updated May 5, 2013 12:13 AM
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(UNDATED) - The ISTEP Plus testing will resume today after two days of interruptions with the online testing system.

The Indiana Department of Education says the decision to resume testing was made based upon assurances made by CTB McGraw-Hill, the company which administers the test.

CTB says students impacted by the interruptions will be able to continue where they left off and no data was lost. As a precaution, the Department of Education is asking schools to decrease their daily test load by 50 percent until further notice.

The department says it will work with schools to ensure they have the necessary time needed to complete the administration of the test.

The online testing system began under the administration of former Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Tony Bennett, who now serves as Commissioner of Education in Florida. In the three years his administration oversaw the online ISTEP testing, Bennett says they had their issues as well, but worked with CTB to correct them.

Bennett says, especially during the 2011 tests when they saw numerous problems, the tests affected by those problems were reviewed in order to validate the final scores. Neither CTB nor the Department of Education has said if that will occur this year.

Bennett says there are many advantages to using the online testing, including the speed in which the results are given. He says, though, that the old "paper and pencil" testing should be available as a backup in case of problems with the online system.

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