Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Columns

June 18, 2013

TOM LoBIANCO: Disparate Ind. pols agree ISTEP answers needed

Lawmakers could seek study costs, fines from McGraw-Hill.

Indiana’s top Statehouse leaders all agree they’d like some answers from CTB/McGraw-Hill on the ISTEP-plus failures, and they could get some as soon as the end of the week.

A legislative panel studying why 78,000 test-takers were frozen out of the high-stakes exam last month plans to meet Friday to hear from CTB/McGraw-Hill President Ellen Haley on what went wrong. Schools Superintendent Glenda Ritz, meanwhile, plans an outside review determining the validity of the test results. That could be completed within a month.

Both are aimed at finding out how the state’s can’t-fail test failed.

“Obviously, we want some answers from CTB/McGraw-Hill. That is our greatest concern right now,” said Senate President Pro Tem David Long, R-Fort Wayne. “Going forward, are we in danger of having this happen again? Is it the vendor’s fault? Why did it happen? And what can be done to avoid it in the future? How did it impact the kids at the different levels?”

Nobody’s ready just yet to dump McGraw-Hill, which has a four-year, $95 million contract to provide the test. Nor is anyone ready to revert to paper and pencil. But the frustration has provided a bit of unity in a building where Republican lawmakers recently joined forces to hand Republican Gov. Mike Pence his first veto override last week.

“We have to hold our vendor accountable. It’s important that every vendor of the state provide the services that have been contracted in a timely and effective way, and we want to understand what happened with regard to the ISTEP testing,” Pence said.

The broad strokes of the troubles have been well-reported by this point. The state’s critically important standardized test stalled amid server troubles from McGraw-Hill, which apparently could not handle the crush of online test-takers. But the “how” has yet to be fully explained, and determining how to make sure it doesn’t happen again has not been reached.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • BRIAN HOWEY: World is rising up to meet Putin's thuggery Any illusions I had about the progressive nature of Vladimir Putin’s Russian regime quickly dissipated when I returned to my Moscow Grand Marriott room in August 2007. Upon opening the door, I was greeted with the spectacle of my papers and note pads

    July 28, 2014

  • DICK WOLFSIE: A trip to end all trips My wife is planning a very exciting vacation to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary. This was a big surprise to me. Not the vacation part, but the 35 years. I thought it was 34. Right now she is on the back porch, the patio table stacked high with

    July 28, 2014

  • ED VASICEK: Happy marriages do not just happen My wife, Marylu, and I met through a mutual friend. My wife had been involved with Campus Crusade at her university, where my friend, Norman, also attended. One Christmas break, Norman invited his friends from church (including me) to a party — along

    July 27, 2014

  • MICHAEL HICKS: Truth about inflation Almost nothing in economics seems to confuse people as much as monetary inflation. That confusion leaves an intellectual void into which some of the least credible ideas of the modern world crawl.Goods and services typically have a price dictated in

    July 27, 2014

  • RAY DAY: Some laws will do us in In my opinion, we have made laws that are contrary to what they were intended. And this writer is going to let you in on his thoughts about them. One of the things that has been processed incorrectly is the child abuse law. When you tell the parent h

    July 26, 2014

  • MARK HEINIG JR.: Will Pence, Ritz and their playmates ever grow up? Many Hoosier Republicans are curious about Gov. Mike Pence’s future. He probably is, too. Assuming he doesn’t wish to return to Congress or retire from politics, he must decide whether to seek another term as governor of Indiana or run for president

    July 25, 2014

  • LEE HAMILTON: Why congressional incumbents keep getting re-elected It’s no news that Congress is unpopular. In fact, at times it seems like the only real novelty on Capitol Hill would be a jump in its approval rating. In June, a Gallup poll found members’ standing with the American people at a historic low for a mid

    July 25, 2014

  • SEN. JIM BUCK: New laws offer help for kids Families with children who have special needs often face difficulties finding the best care or treatment for their specific circumstance. During the 2014 legislative session, the Indiana General Assembly passed several initiatives to assist these fam

    July 24, 2014

  • BILL STANCZYKIEWICZ: Youth sports leagues are on troubling decline An important youth development activity is looking to end a recent losing streak. Participation in organized youth sports leagues for baseball, football, basketball and soccer declined by 4 percent between 2008-2012, according to a report in the Wall

    July 24, 2014

  • MAUREEN HAYDEN: Expiring term heightens urgency of legislator's mission State Rep. Rebecca Kubacki had plans for her return to the General Assembly next January.The two-term Republican from Kosciusko County wanted to exert “full force” to roll back a law that prevents the children of undocumented immigrants from paying i

    July 23, 2014

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries
Poll
Kelly Lafferty's video on Tom Miller