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ISTEP firm faces third-degree from lawmakers, big damages

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Indiana's state superintendent announced Friday she is seeking at least $614,000 in damages from CTB/McGraw-Hill for testing troubles as the company's president apologized to state lawmakers.

CTB/McGraw-Hill President Ellen Haley called the disruptions for nearly 80,000 Indiana students last month "unacceptable" Friday and said the company's online servers were "overwhelmed."

A spokesman said Haley would answer questions about the damages after she finishes testifying in front of the joint House and Senate education committee on Friday afternoon. Lawmakers from both parties have said they want answers about the troubles with the test.

Superintendent Glenda Ritz said she is seeking $400,000 for fines covered in the company's $95 million contract with the state. The additional money would pay for an independent review of the testing data, as well as better reporting data.

The amounts are not final, and could grow as more information about the tests comes to light, according to the IDOE.

Administration of the state's standardized test was thrown into chaos after online tests began freezing for hours at a time. The results are used to calculate teacher pay and school grades.

“The consequences of CTB’s server failures were real and significant for Indiana schools," Ritz said in a statement Friday. "As superintendent, I will work to ensure that schools are made whole while continuing to negotiate with CTB in good faith.” 

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  1. Those of you yelling to deport them all should at least understand that the law allows minors (if not from a bordering country) to argue for asylum. If you don't like the law, you can petition Congress to change it. But you can't blindly scream that they all need to be deported now, unless you want your government to just decide which laws to follow and which to ignore.

  2. 52,000 children in a country with a population of nearly 300 million is decimal dust or a nano-amount of people that can be easily absorbed. In addition, the flow of children from central American countries is decreasing. BL - the country can easily absorb these children while at the same time trying to discourage more children from coming. There is tension between economic concerns and the values of Judeo-Christian believers. But, I cannot see how the economic argument can stand up against the values of the believers, which most people in this country espouse (but perhaps don't practice). The Governor, who is an alleged religious man and a family man, seems to favor the economic argument; I do not see how his position is tenable under the circumstances. Yes, this is a complicated situation made worse by politics but....these are helpless children without parents and many want to simply "ship" them back to who knows where. Where are our Hoosier hearts? I thought the term Hoosier was synonymous with hospitable.

  3. Illegal aliens. Not undocumented workers (too young anyway). I note that this article never uses the word illegal and calls them immigrants. Being married to a naturalized citizen, these people are criminals and need to be deported as soon as humanly possible. The border needs to be closed NOW.

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