Unlike other Florida school districts, online FCAT problem is minimal in Monroe

skinney@keynoter.comApril 26, 2014 

Compared to other school systems in Florida, the Monroe County School District experienced only minor problems in the web-based administration of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test on Tuesday.

Christina McPherson, the district's director of performance and accountability, said 20 seventh-graders at Marathon Middle/High School had a slight delay in submitting complete tests covering reading.

Otherwise, she said the district has had "a peaceful FCAT administration. In comparison to other districts, we had a good week."

Of the 67 school districts in the state, Florida Department of Education Communications Director Joe Follick said 26 reported technical difficulties. Monroe is not included on that list, he said.

Some students in those 26 counties couldn't log in. Others, after finishing the test, received error messages when submitting them.

Following the problem, State Education Commissioner Pam Stewart sent a letter to Walter Sherwood, president of state services for contract testing vendor Pearson, calling the glitches "inexcusable" and adding the state would pursue "liquidated damages." She didn't say what that means.

In a statement posted to the company website, Pearson chalked up the issue to "Internet traffic disruptions" caused by third-party hosting service Savvis.

McPherson said the students affected locally were taking the reading FCAT. The test is used to determine student course placement, teacher performance and school grades, among other things.

KeysNet is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service