Testing Error Affects Thousands Of Oklahoma Students

Tuesday, May 5th 2015, 5:56 pm

A new issue with state testing in public schools could mean thousands of students need to retake the English and reading exams. This time it was an issue with the instructions that didn't tell students how to see an important section of the online test.

Some students figured it out on their own - but an unknown number of students logged out of the test - not realizing they hadn't seen it all.

Before students ever sit down to take state tests, they're given instructions on what to do, but during some tests over the last two weeks, an important step was left out. On reading tests, students read two stories and answer questions.

The first story pops up automatically, but the second is on a second page underneath another tab on the screen.

"And your one, is automatically displayed - story one - but if you hit the two the second story comes up," said Erin Lester, testing coordinator for Tulsa Public Schools.

Testing company Measured Progress has since asked schools to make sure students know how to find the second story.

School districts are sending letters home about the option to take the test over.

Read Letter From Tulsa Public Schools To Parents

"The test coordinators are asking the students to think about whether they had questions or if something didn't make sense of the test, or if they didn't click the tab, then take the letter home and talk their parents about the opportunity to retest," Lester said.

The tests affected are 6 through 8th grade reading, and English 2 and 3 end-of-instruction tests. At Tulsa Public Schools that's more than 14,000 students with the option to retest.

5/4/2015 Related Story: Testing Error Allows Oklahoma 6th Graders To Retake Reading Test

The Tulsa school district won't know how many take the option - until later in the week. Students have to notify the district by Wednesday.

"If you feel like this would be beneficial for your child to retake the test, we can invalidate the first score and take the retest," said Erin Lester, TPS testing coordinator.

The problem varies by district, depending on when they started testing and whether it was after the word got out about the problem. The state has given all students the option to retest.