A glitch in new state testing of kindergarteners | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A glitch in new state testing of kindergarteners

Posted By on Thu, Apr 14, 2011 at 2:47 PM

A teacher wrote me this morning to say she'd heard the wrong version of a standardized test had been admnistered to kindergarten students statewide.

State Education Department spokesman Seth Blomeley says that's not true. But ... the wrong test preparation materials were distributed for an undetermined number of the 37,000 students who took the kingergarten test. That is raising questions about how to judge the test scores. The state Board of Education will discuss the issue May 16. The districts acquire prep material on their own, so the state doesn't know how many districts might be affected. Perhaps four or five districts or more, Blomeley said. Districts include Bentonville, Bearden, Cabot and Atkins.

Blomeley's full explanation follows:

This is the first year of a contract with Questar Assessment Inc. of Apple Valley, Minn. to provide testing for the state's public schools for grades kindergarten through 9th grade.

Questar subcontracts with Riverside of Chicago to provide the Iowa Test of Basic Skills to various grades, including kindergarten.

The kindergarten test was administered last week in most schools, although schools have until tomorrow (Friday) to give them.

So, this is the first year schools across the state are giving this new kindergarten test, which is a Level 6 Iowa test. The assessment has different types of testing material than the previously-given kindergarten test.

Transitions in education, as with a lot of endeavors, sometimes result in difficulties as everyone works to get the new system in place. This appears to be one of those instances.

A representative from Riverside sold some districts the wrong test preparation material. We believe this was in February when schools were getting ready to administer the test. The rep sold Level 5 materials, instead of Level 6 materials. Level 6 includes an additional reading comprehension section.

It's our understanding that the wrong prep material is no longer being sold.

The wrong prep material being sold to some districts had no impact on the actual test given. The correct test, Level 6, was still administered.

Also, some school officials are concerned about the Level 6 Iowa test being more difficult because of the new testing material.

Dr. Kimbrell is analyzing the situation based on feedback he's received from district officials. He wants to accurately assess student achievement. With that in mind, he is reviewing his options as far as the best method to score the test.

Additionally, the state board will discuss the test at its May 16 meeting.

Tags: , , ,

From the ArkTimes store


Comments (4)

Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Anybody around?

    The Thanksgiving open line.
    • Nov 23, 2017
  • Turkeys rescued in Yellville enjoy their Thanksgiving

    Farm Sanctuary, an animal protection organization, sends word that four turkeys rescued from the Yellville Turkey Trot after the annual drops from buildings and an airplane will enjoy Thanksgiving in friendlier places
    • Nov 23, 2017
  • The New Orleans charter school 'miracle'? It's a ruse

    The New Orleans Tribune has a devastating piece of editorial commentary, based on local reporting and test scores, that lays bare the depiction of the charterization of New Orleans public schools 12 years ago as a miracle of the "reform" movement.
    • Nov 23, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Judge anticipates punishment of lawyers in Fort Smith class action case

    Federal Judge P.K. Holmes of Fort Smith issued a 32-page ruling yesterday indicating he contemplates punishment of 16 lawyers who moved a class action lawsuit against an insurance company out of his court to a state court in Polk County after a settlement had been worked out.
    • Apr 15, 2016
  • Speaking of the Clinton Foundation: Returns in maize and beans

    A reporter for Politifact, the Pulitzer Prize-winning fact-checking organization, sent a reporter to Africa to see where money given to the Clinton Foundation has been put to work. He found tangible results.
    • Sep 6, 2016
  • IHOP coming down, but .....

    I always scan the Little Rock City Board for items of interest this week and this one caught my eye: A zoning measure required by a proposal to tear down the IHOP at Markham and University.
    • Apr 30, 2016

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Anybody around?

    • Great story deadseasquirrel! I haven't heard the NPR version. As someone who grew up during…

    • on November 24, 2017
  • Re: Anybody around?

    • NVR, have you heard arlo's performance of Alice's Restaurant that was on npr some thanksgiving,…

    • on November 24, 2017
  • Re: Anybody around?

    • Max and friends please listen to first two hours of this- November 20, 2017. Dane…

    • on November 24, 2017



© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation