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Holcomb: ILEARN results to show a decrease from ISTEP

Holcomb said he doesn't want teacher evaluations, or school letter grades to be affected by the ILEARN scores. He said that will help to "ease the transition" into the new test.

Posted: Aug 26, 2019 12:15 PM
Updated: Aug 26, 2019 12:19 PM

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WLFI) — Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb is lowering expectations of the ILEARN test. Results are due next week, and Holcomb said Monday morning that it will show a decrease from the previous ISTEP tests.

For that reason, Holcomb said he is asking the General Assembly to hold school corporations "harmless" for the results. Holcomb said he doesn't want teacher evaluations, or school letter grades to be affected by the ILEARN scores. He said that will help to "ease the transition" into the new test.

ILEARN, or Indiana Learning Evaluation Assessment Readiness Network is the state's replacement for the controversial ISTEP test. 

Gov. Holcomb released the following statement:

“The results of the 2018-19 ILEARN proficiency test are scheduled to be released next week. The results will show a decrease compared to the previously administered ISTEP+ test. Since this is the first year of the ILEARN assessment, I will ask Superintendent McCormick to support my request that the General Assembly take action to hold schools harmless so the test scores do not have an adverse impact on teacher evaluations and schools’ letter grades for the 2018-19 school year. This action will ease the transition to ILEARN, which is a student assessment that allows Indiana to comply with federal ESSA requirements.

“I appreciate the dedicated work of Hoosier educators. Bringing consistency and continuity to how we measure student progress and preparing students for post-secondary success is a shared and important goal.”

State Superintendent Jennifer McCormick released the following statement: 

“The Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) has been actively advocating for a new, modernized, state-legislated accountability system that is fair, accurate, and transparent. As communicated last week, in response to the embargoed ILEARN results, we are proposing legislative action addressing the negative impact on educators, schools, districts, and communities.

“Over the past two weeks, districts and schools received embargoed ILEARN scores. When compared to past ISTEP+ scores, the scores for Indiana’s new assessment, ILEARN, indicated lower achievement levels across the state in both English/language arts and mathematics. The combination of the rigors associated with this newly aligned college and career readiness assessment, national normative data, and the defined established performance cuts all contributed to the lower performance levels. While frustrating, performance dips at some level were expected, as previously experienced in 2014-2015 with the onset of the then newly implemented ISTEP+.

“ILEARN scores will be made public at the September 4 State Board of Education meeting. During a scheduled August 28 press conference, I will be sharing more detailed embargoed information and specific actions I have already requested.”

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