Teach Plus Commends the ISTEP Panel’s Recommendations for Indiana’s New Assessment System

Teach Plus Commends the ISTEP Panel’s Recommendations for Indiana’s New Assessment System

Teachers need a test designed to meet the needs of schools, with clear implementation supports

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – Teach Plus Indiana has issued the following statement on the release of the ISTEP Panel’s recommendations:

“Teach Plus and Teach Plus teachers commend the ISTEP Panel for taking an important first step towards developing a test that meets the needs of Indiana’s teachers and students.  The Panel’s recommendations closely mirror the recommendations that Teach Plus teachers shared with the members of the Indiana General Assembly on the type of assessment that should replace ISTEP, namely that:

  1. There should be one summative test at the very end of the school year.
  2. The test should be graded by Hoosier educators.
  3. Indiana’s students need interim assessments benchmarked to the final test to help predict their performance.
  4. Schools should be able to choose whether they take the test by paper and pencil or online.
  5. There needs to be a continuous improvement system for the state testing process.

“As a teacher, I use daily assessment data to guide and plan targeted instruction,” said Teaching Policy Fellow and MSD of Warren Township teacher Anna Handy.  “We need a state assessment that provides clear and timely data to drive decision making in schools and districts across the state of Indiana.  Currently, ISTEP does not provide that information.  We hope that our recommendations will provide policymakers with clear guiding principles to develop such a test.”

“Teacher voice will be critical for the new test to succeed,” said Teach Plus Indiana Director of Policy Patrick McAlister.  “We’re pleased that the panel listened to teachers when making its recommendations for the new assessment system. This is only the beginning. Solutions-oriented teachers have a key seat at the table as legislators begin to craft policy surrounding the next state test.  Teach Plus teachers are excited to get to work to help guide its design and implementation.”

Teach Plus is a national nonprofit that empowers excellent, experienced teachers to take leadership over key policy and practice issues that affect their students’ success. www.teachplus.org.