With choice of testing devices, one LAUSD school chooses old reliable
Robert Frost Middle School Principal, Francisco Ayala had his choice of iPads, Chromebooks or desktop computers for his students to take the state-mandated computerized Smarter Balanced test. The wireless iPads and Chromebooks represent part of a huge, $500 million technology investment by LA Unified that, just last year, was hailed as a pioneering effort to bridge the...
By Vanessa Romo | March 17, 2015
Cortines predicts state will delay counting statewide test scores
Superintendent Ramon Cortines told the LA Unified board today that he believes the state will delay using statewide computerized test results for any official measures. “The word on the street is that they’re looking favorably that this year’s test will not count,” he said during a discussion of the the district’s use of computers for...
By LA School Report | March 10, 2015
LAUSD’s Smarter Balanced dry run exposes an array of problems
A practice run of the Smarter Balanced test taken by a sampling of LA Unified students last month exposed an alarming number of technological weaknesses that left a third of participating schools unable to access the computerized exam, a new survey shows. “The readiness test pointed out areas that need improvement and repair prior to...
By Vanessa Romo | March 3, 2015
LA Unified’s computer test run encounters — surprise! — glitches
If you thought LA Unified’s practice-run of the Smarter Balanced test last week would go smoothly, think again. But district officials insist the blame is not entirely the district’s fault. The state “Readiness Test” site, which was specifically designed for students to access the practice exam, crashed Thursday when state personnel tried logging into the system....
By Vanessa Romo | February 23, 2015
LA Unified preparing a ‘dress rehearsal’ for computer testing
LA Unified will be conducting a district-wide dress rehearsal on Thursday for the upcoming Smarter Balance exam, California’s new standardized test assessing students on Common Core State Standards. The aim is to identify and resolve any glitches in the technological infrastructure before the tests are given, Lydia Ramos, a district spokesperson told LA School Report....
By Vanessa Romo | February 17, 2015
LA Unified board to consider request to delay computer tests
In its first meeting of 2015, the LA Unified school board tomorrow will debate a range of issues, from students’ eating alone to farm workers’ pay. But it’s the issue of state testing that will have the most immediate and significant impact on more than 300,000 district students. Adding a powerful voice to the growing opposition...
By Vanessa Romo | January 12, 2015
Torlakson announces broadband grants for 33 LAUSD schools
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson today announced that 227 school sites, including 33 in LA Unified, will share nearly $27 million in Broadband Infrastructure Improvement Grants (BIIG) to help school districts increase their ability to administer the state’s new online tests this spring. “These state grants provide the critical last step needed to...
By LA School Report | January 7, 2015
LAUSD completes buy of iPads, Chromebooks for state testing
LA Unified’s recent order for new testing devices ensures that district students will have all the technical equipment they need to take the state mandated exam later this year. Whether the Smarter Balanced test results will be used for anything is a separate issue. While intense public scrutiny over the deal between the district and...
By Vanessa Romo | January 6, 2015
CA considering Cortines request to delay use of computer tests
Responding to a barrage of requests from district superintendents around the state, including a recent appeal from LA Unified Superintendent Ramon Cortines, state education officials will consider a delay in using the results of the 2014-15 Smarter Balanced computerized test as means of measuring academic growth next year. “This will be a public discussion beginning...
By Vanessa Romo | December 16, 2014
JUST IN: Cortines requests delay in counting computer test results
In a sudden reversal for LA Unified, Superintendent Ramon Cortines is asking the state to ignore the district’s Smarter Balanced testing results as a measure of academic growth or improvement next year. In a letter to the State Schools Chief, Tom Torlakson on Friday, Cortines wrote, “I have determined that it would be untimely to have...
By Vanessa Romo | December 15, 2014