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February 2, 2012 at 3:14 PM

Grading updates, errors change some Seattle student test scores

Some Seattle students saw their scores on district-wide tests administered months ago magically rise Wednesday.

Other students, of course, saw their scores fall.

The changes on the Measures of Academic Progress scores were not the fault of Seattle Public Schools but due to moves made by the Northwest Evaluation Association, which the districts contracts with for its testing. That group made a grading mistake on the fall kindergarten, 1st grade and 2nd grade tests. It also updated its national comparison database, which controls the achievement percentile that students obtain — a standard move to allow for better comparisons.

Both changes were reflected on the district’s website Wednesday. Parents were notified by email.

“You may notice only a slight change or a very significant┬áchange,” the letter read.

The resulting rush to check the updated scores crashed part of the website Wednesday afternoon.

After the site was restored and parents saw the new scores, some complained. Others argued the incident proved that test scores are unreliable.

The grading mistake was an abnormality, said Mark Teoh, executive director of research, evaluation, assessment and development.

Comments | More in Education | Topics: MAP tests, Mark Teoh, Seattle Public Schools

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