The Ridgefield School District was recently notified by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) that Smarter Balanced tests administered in Spring 2017 to certain fourth grade students for English Language Arts were invalidated. The action was taken by OSPI after it determined that the test proctors who administered the tests did not follow required testing protocols.
When staff members at Union Ridge Elementary first learned of the potential violation, they alerted building administrators, who worked quickly with district staff to limit further incidents. The district followed state guidelines by notifying OSPI of the incident, conducting an investigation, and submitting its findings to them.
Based on its review of the district’s investigation, OSPI made the decision to invalidate the affected students’ English Language Arts test scores. As a result, the Ridgefield School District’s state report card shows that only 39% of its fourth grade students met ELA standards.
“The district is working with building administrators to ensure that test proctors follow all state guidelines to ensure that future incidents with regard to test administration does not recur,” said Chris Griffith, Assistant Superintendent. “The district sincerely apologizes for the inconvenience that this situation has caused to the affected students and their families.”
The state invalidates student test scores when it determines that the test score cannot be relied upon to provide accurate information about a student’s performance. In this case, there was compelling evidence that showed that required testing protocol was not followed.
Further examination of the student test score results shows that 64% of Ridgefield students with valid tests received a passing score. In comparison, the state average is 56%.
“The invalidation of tests was a result of proctors’ misunderstanding of allowable test support materials provided to the students,” said Griffith. “This is an unfortunate event, because we believe the affected students would have performed similarly to their district peers who scored 8% higher than the state average.”