Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

News

September 21, 2013

Greensburg Community Schools students make strong showing on ISTEP

GREENSBURG — The scores are in.

On Wednesday, the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) released the scores of this past spring’s ISTEP testing following a months-long delay caused by a computer glitch. The glitch caused students to be kicked offline while taking the online portion of the test back in April and May, resulting in the possible invalidation of some 1,400 tests statewide.

Greensburg Community Schools (GCS) Director of Curriculum and Instruction Tammy Williams told the Daily News that the computer outages had minimal impact on Greensburg students, with only two student test results being thrown out.

Those students, she stressed, won’t have to retake the ISTEP and neither will they in any way be negatively impacted by their scores being thrown out. Plus, those students will still receive their scores from the test’s “applied skills” portion, which is composed on essays and written math problems. Additionally, parents will still have online access to the portions of the invalidated tests the two students actually completed.

ISTEP scores were invalidated for one of two reasons, according to Williams: Wild fluctuations between last year’s ISTEP score and this year’s score for the same student, or data showing the computer froze for too long a period of time, keeping the student online too long.

Overall, based on the data released Wednesday, Williams is extremely pleased with GCS 2013 ISTEP scores.

For instance, 90.4 percent of Greensburg Elementary School (GES) students, grades 3 through 5, passed both the math and the language arts portions of the 2013 ISTEP test. “That’s 16.9 percent higher than the state average for those grade levels,” Williams said.

Greensburg Junior High School (GJHS) students earned a 78.1 percent combined score between language arts and math, which is almost 5 percentage points higher than the state average, Williams added (the test is administered to grades 3 through 8 only).

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