Kansas extend testing amid computer problems

School Funding Fight Kansas

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas education officials have extended this year’s testing period for students because of persistent computer glitches with state tests.

School districts statewide have reported technical problems with the March rollout of new state assessment tests. Delays have raised concerns that some schools would not complete the tests within the allotted time period.

But because of the computer problems, the schools now have until May 16 to complete state reading, math and science assessments, which is two weeks later than originally planned, The Wichita Eagle reported (http://bit.ly/P4t3Br ).

“While we know there have been delays that have caused some hair-pulling moments . each issue identified is bringing us one step closer to delivering one of the best assessments in the country,” Brad Neuenswander, deputy education commissioner, said in a statement Thursday to districts and test coordinators.

Neuenswander said the University of Kansas’ Center for Educational Testing and Evaluation, which developed the tests, is “continuing to address any issues . with the testing platform.”

About 58,000 assessment units were completed Wednesday, he said, compared with 23,000 the first week of testing.

“We are making steady progress,” he said.

The State Board of Education also decided earlier this month that all public schools in Kansas will remain accredited next year, regardless of how they perform on the tests. And, officials have said the tests are being viewed as a trial run for a new type of test that reflects Common Core state standards, and it’s not a problem if some schools or students don’t complete this year’s tests.

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Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle, http://www.kansas.com

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