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ISTEP Scores Released, And As Expected, Results Not Pretty

Melanie Holtsman

Results from the ISTEP+ test administered during the 2014-15 school year have finally been released – but the picture they paint is not pretty for Indiana schools, and policymakers talking about moving to an entirely different test altogether.

Many expected scores to be low, since 2015 marked the first year Indiana tested the new set of academic standards adopted after Indiana left the Common Core -- and that was indeed the case.

Statewide, only 67 percent of students in grades three through eight passed the English/Language arts section, and the pass rate for Math sat at 61 percent. Just 53 percent of students passed both sections.

In 2014, all of these numbers hovered near 70 to 80 percent.

In response, state Superintendent Glenda Ritz reiterated the call to reform Indiana’s testing system. She says it’s time to move Indiana away from the ISTEP+ once and for all.

This is something legislators have called for, too. House Speaker Brian Bosma has said the General Assembly will restart a conversation that faded out last year about using an ‘off the shelf’ test in the future. 

Typically, ISTEP+ scores factor heavily into school accountability grades and teacher evaluations. But several members of the General Assembly have already put forth measures this session to protect schools, teachers and students from what they correctly expected to be relatively negative results.

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