Tennessee education officials believe nearly 10,000 assessment tests across the state were impacted by a program scanning issue that caused some of them to be scored incorrectly.
The Tennessee Department of Education reports that about 9,400 of the approximately 1.9 million TNReady tests that were taken in the last school year were impacted.
Once the errors were corrected, officials say about 1,700 of those 9,400 incorrectly tallied tests actually ended up with a different overall score.
State spokeswoman Sara Gast says the errors did not affect the statewide results.
In a press release, the state department of Education said, “The department completes a myriad of quality checks to ensure all assessment is accurate. These specific issues stem from scanning program changes and resulting delays that our assessment vendor Questar issued a statement about earlier this year — and those errors are now being addressed. Questar understands the seriousness of this quality lapse, and we have taken additional steps to ensure that these issues are avoided in the future. Though we have reported over 99 percent of grades 3-8 and EOC data correctly, we need to be at 100 percent accuracy.”
Questar Assessment, the company that administers and scores TNReady tests apologized for the errors in a statement.
Gast says the scores are due to Questar incorrectly updating its scanning software.
Knox County Schools says leaders have spoken with the state regarding the scoring issue.
“Only three of our schools – Austin-East, Carter and Powell high schools – have been affected and the state is working to make the appropriate corrections,” said Knox County Schools Superintendent Bob Thomas.
Meanwhile some parents and teachers we spoke with are upset, gathering together for a press conference in downtown Knoxville Monday afternoon.
“Year after year, they fail to provide timely information and data from these tests – the all-important assessment. They spend billions of dollars on this and here we sit, once again, waiting for this information. I don’t trust it,” said Dave Gorman, teacher and SPEAK Co-Chair.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.