OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma House Democrats have taken aim at the state's end-of-instruction testing company after thousands of students statewide had their work invalidated due to server crashes.
Many Green Country school officials said they experienced complications last week with online assessments through the state's testing company, CTB/McGraw-Hill.
RELATED LINK: Server crash ends testing in Oklahoma's Schools (http://bit.ly/130EexQ)
According to the State Board of Education, more than 9,000 Oklahoma students were forced to retake their end-of-instruction exams after repeated server outages, and some students' tests were still invalidated even after re-testing, according to a statement on behalf of House Democrats, who have filed a resolution to terminate the testing contract with CBT/McGraw-Hill.
House Resolution 1025 also calls for a lawsuit against the company for "egregious errors and delays."
For high school seniors, the results of the end-of-instruction exams determine whether they can graduate.
"These exams epitomize high-stakes testing," said Democratic Leader Scott Inman, D-Del City and principal author of HR 1025. "Too much hangs in the balance with these exams for them to be administered so poorly."
Inman says CBT/McGraw-Hill's "negligence" must be addressed.
Rep. Jerry McPeak, D-Warner, calls for a refund for the state and "McGraw-Hill should be kicked to the curb."
Tulsa Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Keith Ballard called the online testing situation "disastrous." As of last Wednesday, the district was forced to invalidate hundreds of tests.
The resolution is co-authored by Rep. Jeannie McDaniel, D-Tulsa, and Rep. Donnie Condit, D-McAlester.
On May 1, CTB/McGraw-Hill issued the following statement:
"Earlier this week, students taking online assessments in Indiana and Oklahoma as well as other test takers who use our online systems for summative assessments experienced system interruptions, which have led some local districts to temporarily suspend testing. We regret the impact on these schools and students and have made changes to correct the situation and online testing is resuming today.
While students affected by the interruption will be able to resume testing where they left off and no data has been lost, we understand just how disruptive and frustrating these interruptions have been. The interruptions are not acceptable to students and educators or to CTB/McGraw-Hill. We have worked with the schools in these states for many years and value our relationships with them. We sincerely regret the problems we have caused.
We are doing everything possible to ensure that testing will continue successfully through the remainder of the assessment windows."
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