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Dansville School District on state exams: What went right, what didn't

(WHAM photo)

Dansville, N.Y. - In light of the computer-based glitch on the New York State Assessments, the Dansville Central School District suspended exams for its 7th and 8th graders through Friday, resuming testing on Monday.

The school district said, for the most part, testing went well for its 3rd through 6th graders who tested earlier this week. Five of those students had their information lost, which the district is working to recover.

Ani Rosario has been involved with revising state assessments. She said this was an adjustment and a learning process.

“With any new implementation of technology of any kind, you’re going to have some problems here and there,” Rosario said. “So I think by next year, once all the glitches have been worked out, it’s going to be way better for districts.”

The district said the company, Questar, has been very responsive and sent representatives to help fix the problem.

Despite this major disruption in testing, the district superintendent said there were things that did go right. Testing sessions are now two days instead of three, which means significantly fewer questions for students to answer.

“It really removes much of the anxiety, and we can better measure what students know and can do if we remove some of those obstacles,” said Paul Alioto, the Dansville superintendent. “The state has been flexible and learned from some of these mistakes that we’ve encountered.”

Student can take as much time as they need to take the test. Rosarios says this eliminates fatigue and stress on students.

“If kids want to take more time to take their assessment, I think that’s better,” Rosario said. “I’d rather have them take more time than have them feel like they’re rushed. It’s about the skills and not the scores.”

Revised state assessments take effect in 2021.

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