Online glitches plague FCAT once again - FOX 13 News

Online glitches plague FCAT once again

Posted: Updated:
TAMPA (FOX 13) -

A number of schools in Florida reported more problems with FCAT testing on Tuesday, including some in the Bay Area.

FOX 13 has confirmed issues with several schools, including those in Pasco, Hernando, Highlands, Hardee, Polk and Manatee. When contacted, Hillsborough and Sarasota counties said were not aware of any issues.

School administrators say the problem had to do with the server used to give the computerized sections of the FCAT. Pasco School District's Linda Cobbe said the company the state uses to help administer the computerized sections, Pearson, had server issues across the state on Tuesday. In Pasco County, students couldn't log into the program to begin taking the test.

Cobbe says superintendents across the state received an email Tuesday morning, urging them to suspend testing for the day if they were experiencing the server issue.

"I think the students take it in stride, but we're concerned about the validity of the tests, and the reliability of the results for the students who were not able to take their tests today. So they're going to be taking them on another day, but when the results come in, we're going to be looking at those individual students to see if their results this year are different from previous years and to look at other students across the state," Cobbe said.

On Friday, the Miami Herald reported there were some computer glitches with FCAT testing in Miami-Dade. School officials there said it had to do with a Microsoft update.

The newspaper also pointed out that it wasn't the first time FCAT has faced issues with its online-capabilities.

The Florida Department of Education released this statement:

"As some of you already know, Pearson is experiencing difficulty with a hosting provider this morning, which is causing issues with testing (both TestNav and TestHear) and accessing the PearsonAccess website for test management. The issue does not seem to be statewide, but several districts have reported issues. If your district is experiencing difficulty with live testing, please suspend testing and wait to hear from our office. We do not currently have an estimated timeline from Pearson for when this issue will be resolved, but we will be in touch with updates/resolutions throughout the day. If your district is not experiencing issues, you may continue testing as scheduled as your district is likely not routing through the affected server. Some of you have inquired about schedule extensions due to this issue. Once the problem is resolved, if you have schools that will need more time to complete testing beyond your district's schedule, please let us know (in writing) and we will work with you to ensure that all students in your district have sufficient opportunity to test."

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