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Preliminary ISTEP+ Tests Experience Interruptions…Again

Judy Baxter

More than 100 Indiana schools are claiming they experienced interruptions when students took the online pre-test for the ISTEP Tuesday.

It’s an unwelcome déjá vu – entire school districts experiencing technical glitches with software from test vendor CTB/McGraw-Hill, just like they did in the spring of 2013.

This time around, schools across the state were scheduled to administer the online “stress test” for this year’s ISTEP between 10 and 11 Tuesday morning.

By 10:07, students at Mitchell Community Schools were already having problems. And MCS director of technology Sam Klawitter says by 10:15, it had become impossible to continue testing.

Klawitter is frustrated.

"The standard testing models that are in place are already fundamentally flawed in the expectations that they can create for our students, but they’re further complicated by the fact that they’re impossible to execute," he says.

Klawitter found he was not alone. Tech directors from close to 150 other schools posted to an online forum saying they were having similar issues.

CTB sent out a memo instructing schools to try administering Tuesday’s test again at 1 p.m. – but by that point, Klawitter says, he had decided it was a bust.

Representatives for CTB could not be reached for comment.

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