Educators weigh in after TNReady test canceled

How well did your child’s school do this year? Some parents in Tennessee won’t know the answer to that question after the state canceled this year’s standardized testing.

The state education commissioner says she’s fed up, and she canceled Tennessee’s $107 million contract with testing company Measurement, Inc.

I told you back in February that, after preparing kids to take the test online, the servers crashed on the day of testing. More than two months later, schools haven’t received all the materials needed for paper tests. School leaders say time’s up.

Through 10 years in the classroom, South Fulton Elementary School teacher Christa Hankins says she loves seeing her students do well.

From third through eighth grades, this isn’t South Fulton teachers’ first standardized test, but it’s the first time one has been canceled.

“(It’s) frustrating not knowing really if we’re preparing them as well as we should,” Hankins said. Since August, teachers have put a lot of time into the test. “We could have just taught them more and had more fun,” Hankins said.

Assistant Principal and Testing Coordinator Laura Pitts says months of work went in to a test that now won’t be graded. “Going over the content, making sure they’re prepared. You know, we have a big push. We even have a pep rally to rev our student up for the TNReady test," Pitts said.

Obion County as a whole only had about 75 percent of the testing materials it needed. So, instead of it going on your child’s desk, the test is going back to the manufacturer.

Pitts said she believes the effort will pay off in the long run for teachers and students at South Fulton. She did have this to say to Measurement, Inc: “A lot of teachers and students have worked really hard, and you let them down.”

Hankins is looking ahead, and she says she believes if students there had a chance to take the test, they would have done outstandingly well.

The state has paid $1.6 million already and is working to determine how much it might owe the company. The state cannot give anyone a complete score with only part one complete. Next year’s vendor has not been decided.

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