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Here’s how schools will shorten the ISTEP

Jason Seliskar via Flickr

The Indiana Department of Education has provided schools with information on giving this year’s state ISTEP test, recently shortened from about 12 hours to roughly nine.

The instructions tell schools to give half of the English and math sections in the test’s first part, which is made up of primarily essay-style and short answer questions. This change reduces the test by three hours and five minutes for students in all grade levels, according to the education department.

Regarding social studies, schools have been instructed not to give the short-answer portion of the test to fifth- and seventh-graders, the only students who are tested on the subject. Schools can, however, choose locally whether they want to give the multiple-choice question part.

“We realize that locally the results of the Social Studies portion of ISTEP+ may be used within the educator evaluation system,” the department said in a statement. “We have confirmed that enough data will be derived from the Part 2 portion of the Social Studies assessment to be valid for use in educator evaluation.”

Schools may begin giving the first part of the test to students on Feb. 25.

Background on recent debates over the length of this year’s ISTEP test:

Plans for how ISTEP is changing:

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