$1.3M settlement reached over botched student testing program

CARSON CITY — Nevada has reached a $1.3 million settlement with a New Hampshire company over a botched student testing program, the attorney general’s office announced Monday.

The agreement with Measured Progress Inc. avoids litigation over the failed testing system that prevented thousands of Nevada students in grades three through eight from taking federally mandated assessments under new Common Core standards this spring.

Under the settlement, Nevada will not have to pay Measured Progress $789,000 in fees. The company will also provide Nevada middle schools services and product valued at $510,000 to help students and teachers transition to new science standards.

No settlement has been reached with Smarter Balanced, which developed the electronic testing materials.

Only 30 percent of the roughly 214,000 students expected to take the on-line tests earlier this year successfully completed the assessments because the system repeatedly crashed and many students were unable to log into the testing server. School officials eventually gave up.

“Nevada’s testing experience in 2015 was completely unsatisfactory,” former state Superintendent Dale Erquiaga said.

Erquiaga, recently named Gov. Brian Sandoval’s chief strategy officer, said the settlement shows Measured Progress “is committed to doing the right thing.”

“We are now able to move forward and focus on the needs of our students,” he said.

The state cut its ties with the former testing providers and earlier this month awarded a four-year, $51.5 million contract to CTB/McGraw Hill to develop, administer, score and report standardized tests for thousands of Nevada public school students.

That agreement includes several claw-back provisions that would recover the full portion of the contract’s value if CTB/McGraw Hill failed to provide the full scope of services.

Contact Sandra Chereb at schereb@reviewjournal.com or 775-687-3901. Find her on Twitter: @SandraChereb.



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