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Shelby County Teachers, Leaders Respond To TNReady Problems

MEMPHIS, Tenn (localmemphis.com) - It was deja-vu for thousands of students trying to take the TNReady test Monday morning, they couldn’t even log in. 


The system wide glitch affected high school students across the Mid-South, including Shelby County and it left dozens of teachers frustrated.  They believe the delays will negatively impact their students. 


TNReady Online testing suffered a network failure when it was implemented back in 2016.  However, this morning problems were not due to volume but rather a glitch.  Kids could simply not log on. 


Local education leaders like Keith Williams are tired of seeing these type of problems.


“Well TNReady is not ready, it is not ready,” said Williams, Executive Director of the Memphis Shelby County Education Association.  "A test of this magnitude, there should have been field testing, their should have been samples and when all else fails you can always use the paper and the pencil.  I don't know how they expect for us to abide by these decisions that the state makes and they cannot uphold their end of the bargain."


Williams says he was not surprised to hear of the online problems that dozens of school districts faced across the state Monday morning. 


"Any fluke, any flaw in the process can disrupt the day of the child and the classroom,” Williams said. 


Shelby County Schools Communications Chief, Natalia Powers says many high school students were impacted across Shelby County.  Local 24 News also found out those who could log on, got kicked out of the test. 


“And with teenagers, sometimes their attention span is not very long anyway and so to have that energy zapped from them immediately this morning, really, I'm wondering how they will recover,” said M. Raquel Williams, a Shelby County Schools Elective Teacher. 


There have also been other problems in past years.


“According to Candice McQueen they discovered the error of the questions after the test was printed. Therefore instead of reprinting the test and restructuring the questions, they just chose to have students omit certain questions,” Williams said. 


Last Saturday, during the Spring Education Forum, State Representative Joe Towns released his frustration. 


“If these kids make a mistake on these tests who’s going to correct that to make sure their grades are proper. Nobody, so that means the kids are going to seem as if they’ve failed when the test was flawed and we paid all those people for the test so somebody should be fired and the test should have been done properly,” said State Representative Joe Towns, who represents District 84. 


Some SCS teachers told our reporter, their students’ performance on this test can ultimately effect their evaluations and that could have an impact on their raises and positions.


They are hoping for a much smoother process Tuesday. 

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