"The long-awaited changeover to computer-based standardized testing in Tennessee won't happen this year.
"Like you, we are incredibly disappointed," Tennessee education commissioner Candice McQueen wrote to superintendents around the state.
In an email, McQueen told administrators that Monday's system failure caused her to lose confidence in the system operated by an outside vendor. Students will revert to pencil-and-paper tests this year, previously described as a "worst case scenario."
Unfortunately, issues have continued to arise with the online platform. The new nature of the issue this morning has highlighted the uncertainly around the stability of Measurement Inc.’s testing platform, MIST. Despite the many improvements the department has helped to make to the system in recent months and based on the events of this morning, we are not confident in the system’s ability to perform consistently. In the best interest of our students and to protect instructional time, we cannot continue with Measurement Incoporated’s online testing platform in its current state. — Candice McQueen
This was not how Tennessee education officials hoped the first day for online testing would go. What is described as a "major outage" occurred at 8:25 a.m. Monday just as many students logged on, leading the state to suspend testing until further notice.
Tennessee education officials blamed their vendor.
"We are urgently working with Measurement Inc. to identify the causes and correct the problem. At this time, we are advising that schools experiencing problems with the test discontinue testing, and return to their normal classes," Education Commissioner Candice McQueen told superintendents in an email.
In Metro Nashville Public Schools, spokesman Joe Bass said a half dozen principals reported testing trouble. Only about 20 schools were scheduled to start taking the new TNReady since the testing window runs until early March.
Rutherford County Schools sent a statement to parents, telling them testing had to be suspended and pointing the finger at "a technology failure at the state level." Districts had been warned by state officials to make sure their own Wi-fi networks weren't going to be the problem.
School leaders have voiced concerns about just this kind of thing happening. That's why Williamson County Schools delayed the start of testing by several days.
At the end of January, the 1,000 students at Republic charter schools in Nashville took a practice test on the new system. And it crashed.
Founder Ravi Gupta sent a letter to state officials, who responded by saying the problem was fixed. But after Monday's system failure, Gupta says he’d prefer to just use the backup pencil and paper version."...
I’m in the airport heading home from Miami Device as I draft this post. I learned so much; I’m exhausted. But some of the biggest things I appreciate are the people. Back in May, I purchased a Mac to use at home, and there are tons of tricks I still don’t know. When I plugged […]
This is the seventh post in a series of posts featuring a number of EdTech charts for teachers. Today's chart contains some very good resources for math teachers. We have arranged these resources into 8 main categories: iPad math apps, Android math apps, Chrome math apps, Graphing calculator apps, Math games, calculator apps, and web-based tools for math teachers. You may want to bookmark this page for later reference. Enjoy
#While there are leadership challenges created by the prevalence of social media technology, it has also become a powerful tool. Principals can use social media to improve communication, provide information during school safety situations, increase collaboration, and enhance professional development.
Accomplished principals use technology as a powerful learning tool. They may participate in digital networks for communication among professional colleagues, use social networking tools for informal learning, or take part with professional colleagues in online learning communities. These principals use such learning opportunities to consistently reflect on ways to improve their practice of leadership. - Accomplished Principal Standards from the National Board Certification for Educational Leaders First Edition National Board for Professional Teaching Standards 1525 Wilson Boulevard l Arlington, VA 22209
Reading, writing, spelling, speaking, nouns, verbs, capitalization, punctuation, and research are just a few of the skills covered in the ELA classroom. It was hard to narrow down apps when ELA runs such a wide gamut. But have your students try out a few of these free apps and inspire creativity and learning in your classroom.
Today’s teachers are finding new and better ways to engage their students in the learning that goes on in classrooms. One of the ways to stay relevant is to use technology to their advantage. It connects to the world that our students live in and brings high levels of interest. The connected world is where our students live and finding ways for learning to take place in avenues like social media is a way for our students to relate to our curriculum.
So how do we make sense of it all? My suggestion: Keep it simple. If the digital devices lack a natural point for integration, don’t shoehorn it in for the sake of making instruction “connected.” Pedagogy trumps technology.
In his book In Defense of Food: AnEater’s Manifesto, Michael Pollan gave readers a simple call to action to remember the rules for better nutrition and health: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” I humbly emulated Pollan’s prose, offering a similar summary in Haiku form of the current findings about classroom technology:
Envisioned as a safe space for high schoolers to discuss sensitive issues without having to reveal their names, After School has in some cases become a vehicle for bullying, crude observations and alleged criminal activity, all under a cloak of secrecy. Similar to Yik Yak — an open app that has become popular on college campuses — After School allows teens to post comments and images on message boards associated with individual high school campuses but carries nothing identifying the students who post there.
No one will deny the impact that mobile is having on the world. All one has to do is take a look at how mobile devices are changing everyone’s perception of computing as it is more accessible and personal than ever. Over the years I have written extensively on the topic, including a chapter in my new book Uncommon Learning. As a principal I quickly saw the potential in mobile learning and as a result our school became the first to embrace Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) back in 2010.
Mobile devices offer a new and exciting avenue to engage students and promote learning while increasing academic achievement. Research by Cristol and Gimbert (2013) found that students utilizing mobile learning devices scored, on average, 52.34 points higher on the state assessments than their peers who did not use them. Students are more connected than ever with their devices, and it is necessary for teachers to capitalize on this opportunity to drive student learning and outcomes. With any initiative, especially BYOD or 1:1, the focus has to be on learning.
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