Boulder Valley Students "Earn" Zeros on Mis-administered CSAP

According to a story in Boulder's Daily Camera this afternoon:

"Sixty-seven students at Superior's Eldorado K-8 School will receive zeros on the writing portion of this year's CSAP test after an eighth-grade teacher broke the rules by having students practice on writing topics copied from a previous year's test."

Two years ago, the exact same situation happened at Runyon Elementary in Littleton. In both cases, the schools realized what happened soon after the test was administered and contacted CDE to report their concerns. In both cases, it appears CDE will give a score of zero to every affected student. This situation upset lawmakers enough in 2008 to include a provision for it in their CAP4K, more officially known as Senate Bill 08-212. It amended Colorado Revised Statute 22-7-604(3) to read:

"...the department shall identify and implement alterations in the calculation method, or other appropriate measures, to ensure that, to the fullest extent practicable, a public school is not penalized in the calculation of the school's CSAP-area standardized, weighted total score by inadvertent errors committed in the administration of an assessment."

So why doesn't that law apply to this new case in Boulder? Simple: it was repealed last year by Senate Bill 09-163, for reasons I never heard discussed. Assuming this is as honest of a mistake as BVSD claims, it doesn't seem fair to give kids zeros. After all, I'm sure the kids know more than nothing. I hope we hear an explanation from CDE and the Colorado legislature about the repeal of the CAP4K provision, and I won't be surprised to find it back in the law soon.

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