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Re: [K12OSN] State Testing

Kentucky tried to pilot a program last year. Apparently the bandwidth was way too high. Which only goes to show you that the program was written really badly.

What really annoys me is that some of my brightest students and I could write a program that would handle most of what they want in a summer. Just create a Java app that downloads questions and uploads answers when students need them (so everyone's not hitting the server at the same time). The only challenging part is making sure that students can't quit the program or otherwise use another program while they're testing.

And how many millions are we spending on stuff that a developer would do for less than $50k and could be released as open source so that all the states could then use it?


On Feb 26, 2006, at 8:08 PM, Doug Simpson wrote:

All I have to say is "Good Luck!"

We have state testing here for some of our programs and it is attempted to be administered online.

We have yet to have one work reliably and efficiently yet and we have been doing it for several years already.


Ken Grant wrote:

Hello All:

	This may or may not be the best place to address this issue, but I
figure there are enough tech/educational experts here that someone is
bound to have encountered it.
My problem: Our state, Wyoming, is converting all standardized testing for compliance with the "No Child Left Behind" law to computers. Starting in about six weeks, children in grades 3-8, and grade 11, will be taking our state test online. The test is designed by the state but
admisistered through Harcourt Assessment.  To ensure that students do
not have access to other parts of the computer they are working on, all
testing must be done with a "secure browser." To get the browser to
be secure a program called SiteKiosk is used. And you guessed
it, it only runs on Windows and sometimes Macs.

	At this point the state is still dealing with many tech issues,
including getting SiteKiosk to run on Macs.  I've been assured by
people at the state level and at Harcourt Assessment that no testing has been done with Linux. Since K12LTSP is being used by school districts
across the nation, this seems to me to be a terrible oversight.

I realize that the bigger school districts have the funding for Windows
systems; however, we are a small Catholic school with very little
resources to invest in IT. K12LTSP is the only way we can get computers
in the classroom.
	All that said, have any of you been faced with a similar issue?  If
so, how have you dealt with it? How many schools with K12LTSP are using
it as their only platform?

I plan to make as much noise as possible with both the state and with
Harcourt so that this situation can be corrected, but in the meantime
any ideas on how to get SiteKiosk to run on Linux would be great. Does anyone know if a Linux-based program exsists to make a browser secure?

	Thanks for reading my rant and for K12LTSP...it's an awesome OS!


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