April 2014



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Schools across state administering Smarter Balanced Field Test

“Thank you.” That’s the message from the Department of Education to educators across the state who are busy administering the Smarter Balanced Field Test. “The reason it’s working is because everyone is working hard to make it work,” said Jan Martin, the department’s assessment director.

To date, nearly half of the total number of tests in South Dakota have been completed. That’s 132,000 out of 288,000.

As expected, there have been some technical issues, including log-in and online calculator problems. It’s important that districts report recurring issues to the Smarter Balanced Help Desk. “There are 20 states administering the tests to 3.5 million students, which is pretty phenomenal,” Martin said. “While things are going well overall, when a district is having a problem, it’s frustrating, and we really appreciate the patience everyone has shown.”

The next step in test development is determining where cuts will be established to distinguish between the various proficiency levels. K-12 teachers from every state in the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium will be key to the success of this important process. More information will be coming soon.

Contact Jan Martin,
Department of Education, at
(605) 773-3246 with questions.