The South Orange – Maplewood School District — as well as districts statewide — were forced to cancel PARCC testing on Wednesday because of computer issues stemming from the test’s administrator, a district spokeswoman confirmed this afternoon.
“[The test] was not officially canceled, but testing did not take place due to the technical issues,” said spokeswoman Suzanne Turner shortly before 1 p.m.
Grades participating in testing this week included 9th graders at Columbia High School; 7th graders at South Orange and Maplewood Middle School; 4th graders at Clinton, South Mountain, Seth Boyden and Tuscan Elementary Schools, and 5th graders at Jefferson Elementary School.
“All students will be rescheduled,” said Turner.
The district was aware of problems in the morning when students attempted to log in to the computers to begin the test, and some students were unable to log in. Peter Shulman, Dept. Commissioner of the NJ Department of Education emailed the district that students in many districts statewide were unable to access the PARCC “due to issues with the Pearson Access Next (PAN) system.”
Initially, Turner said that CHS and Clinton had officially cancelled the test for the day but other schools were waiting to see how many students had been able to take parts of the test to determine whether they needed to reschedule.
The problem was seemingly limited to New Jersey and did not affect the six other states and the District of Columbia, which also participates in the exams, according to the Asbury Park Press.
Pearson is working on the problem this afternoon, according to Shulman, “to ensure the system is in optimum state prior to testing beginning tomorrow morning.”
But some parents took to social media to express their frustration with the test, which has seen a number of students opting out in SOMSD. “What a fiasco,” a reader posted on Village Green News & Views. “Just cancel PARCC altogether.”