FRANKFORT, Ind. (WLFI) - The ISTEP issues this week are more than an inconvenience for students and teachers. They can also have an effect on teacher evaluations and school funding.
Community Schools of Frankfort has had the same issues with the ISTEP testing just as West Lafayette and many other districts around the state have.
Last year, Frankfort schools got a C grade by the state.
Administrators say they are not paying attention to the grade, but to whether the testing problems will affect their students and teachers.
Fourth-grade teacher Melissa Griggs has spent all year prepping her students at Frankfort's Suncrest Elementary School for the end-of-the-year ISTEP test.
Monday and Tuesday, that preparation was all for naught with issues keeping her students from taking the test online.
But she says her students are rolling with the changes.
"What I've noticed coming from our students is a very high level of confidence. Giving our students the skills and the strategies they need in order to not only be wise test takers, but to be wise learners," Griggs said.
Griggs says the confidence she sees in her students is helping her do the same.
For the first time, all Indiana teachers will be assessed with the RISE evaluations this year.
One assessment measures student learning growth, using data from ISTEPs.
Community Schools of Frankfort Assistant Superintendent Joel McKinney says that assessment is in the back of teachers' minds.
"In terms of looking at the final results of the students who are testing this year, and the growth that they may or may not make, I know there are teachers who are absolutely concerned about that," McKinney said.
But something McKinney and Griggs are not concerned about is the grades the Indiana Department of Education gave the corporation.
The district received a C. Suncrest Elementary received a D.
"It's frustrating that we get a letter grade in the first place. I know in my heart that Suncrest is not a D school," Griggs said.
"Honestly, we don't put a lot of emphasis on our school grade," McKinney said. "Our teachers are going to be well-prepared in terms of professional development, and our students are going to receive an outstanding education."
McKinney says he made trips to all the district's schools today, and testing was continuing successfully.
He says he knows the public looks at districts' grades, but he is confident teaching tools this year prepared students to take the test the best they can, no matter what.
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