Thompson: Testing Foul-Ups in Oklahoma Will the Past Be Prelude?
This year’s testing foul-ups included more mistakes by Pearson in New York City, and computer malfunctions during testing in Indiana and Oklahoma. Carrie Coppernoll’s Testing Fallout Persists, in the Daily Oklahoman, describes the political decisions that must be made after high-stakes testing was disrupted, last month, by computer crashes.
Before No Child Left Behind, Oklahoma had its share of testing fiascoes. In 1997, Harcourt Publishing sent the wrong writing exams to 8th and 11th graders. In 2001, Riverside Publishing lost its contract with the state after significant delays in providing test results.
In the last ten years, Oklahoma has used five different testing companies. Harcourt regained the contract but then it printed incorrect answers on the sample test. In 2007, Pearson was awarded the contract for end-of-instruction tests, but it made data classification errors and mishandled its portfolio assessments for profoundly disabled students. Now, Oklahoma has to decide how to deal with McGraw-Hill’s latest mess.
Economics 101 would predict that after NCLB dramatically increased the demand for standardized tests, the quality of the testing product would decline. Even with the primitive old bubble-in tests, that seems to be happening. When the far more complicated Common Core assessments are rushed into production, shouldn't we expect even more testing debacles?-JT(@drjohnthompson) Image via.