Michigan PTA passed a resolution asking the state to stop the online testing. The state said no. They forgot that public education is for the public, not for the bureaucracy.

MONDAY, APRIL 6, 2015
Michigan PTA Adopts M-Step Resolution

The Michigan PTA recently adopted the Clarkston PTA Council’s resolution calling on the State Legislature and the Michigan Department of Education to cease the administration of the M-Step assessment, scheduled to begin on April 13. The resolution follows:

Michigan PTA’s
M-Step
Resolution (Adopted 2015)

WHEREAS the State of Michigan
implemented a new statewide, standardized test on November 13, 2014, after the school year
had begun;

put in place required testing windows after the curriculum was set, meaning some content
included in the M-STEP may not yet be covered;

communicated changes in test requirements on January 29, 2015, resulting in potential shifts in schedules for the computer-based version;

released the test software on February 26, 2015, a month and a half prior to testing, revealing
the need for updates to the existing technology in a number of districts;

notified schools on March 12, 2015 that the management portion of eDIRECT, used to print test tickets (27,357 tickets for an 8,000-student district) and to input test accommodations and student related information, will not be released until April 3, 2015, the first day of a week-long holiday for many school districts, which necessitates the re-work of test schedules to allow for completion of above tasks on the first day of testing, April 13, 2015;

requires the presence of test proctors paid by school districts;

will discontinue the M-STEP assessment after one year to create a different tool for the school
year 2015-16 and beyond; and

WHEREAS the State, in November 2014, notified school districts that the M-STEP would utilize a computer-adaptive format, meaning that it would individualize the assessment questions for students based upon their responses; and

on February 9, 2015, notified school districts that M-STEP is not computer adaptive; and

WHEREAS the State originally notified school districts that M-STEP data would be available to schools shortly after the tests were administered so that schools could use the data to inform instruction; and as of March 24, 2015, cannot confirm when M-STEP data will be available to school districts after the test is completed; and

WHEREAS the M-STEP, due to technology limitations in a number of school districts, will disrupt schooling, render technology inaccessible for curricular needs, and interrupt the exploration of content from April to June, meaning that secondary students will miss out on classroom time and new learning in order to take the M-STEP; and

WHEREAS the State has determined that it will use M-STEP results to prescribe how districts will allocate At-Risk funding, which the State has historically targeted toward students at risk of failing in school due to adverse factors in their lives;

WHEREAS the M-STEP process, in its entirety, is largely out of the control of local school districts;

NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY RESOLVED: That Michigan PTA

● Calls for the immediate cessation of the M-STEP assessment process and administration for the year 2014-2015;

● Calls for not utilizing M-STEP’s results to negatively impact school district funding and funding allocations.

● Supports a balanced, localized, nationally normed assessment system.