ISASP Testing to Start Next Week

Despite nationwide controversy, the Iowa City Community School District will start holding “onsite” for online students and in-person testing.

The ISASP are the Iowa standardized tests.

Courtesy of Google

The ISASP are the Iowa standardized tests.

Rachel Marsh, Photo Editor, Reporter

On April 20 and 21, City High will partake in the annual statewide standardized tests, formerly known as Iowa Assessments, and now ISASPs. Principal John Bacon emailed in conjunction with the guidance department and explained the plan for testing of the online students as well as for the in-person students.

“Online families, please make sure you have filled out the form indicating your preference for testing. Online students who choose to test onsite will report to the City High Annex (“old Hoover”) to test on the April dates above. Should you choose to test “remotely,” you will test on May 17, 18, and 19,” the guidance department wrote in an email to parents, students and teachers.

Online students were given the option to test “onsite” or remotely with in-person students testing in person. Online students and in-person students will be in separate areas, with online in Old Hoover Elementary and in-person with their advisory teacher.

Sophomores are required to take an extra test – the science test – and seniors will not have class during morning testing, though they are required to be in class after testing has been completed for that day. 

ISASP testing is required by the state of Iowa. It is used to measure students’ individual academic progress and also hold schools accountable for making adequate yearly progress,” Principal John Bacon said. “The data is used by the state to judge overall school performance. Certainly, we want to put our best foot forward and show everybody that City High students are capable of achieving at a high level.”

This decision has not been met without backlash. Not unique to City High, students and teachers are taking to social media to voice their opinions on state-wide testing while still in a pandemic. Teachers and students across the country have created the hashtags #SayNoToStandardizedTesting and #CancelTheTest. 

“For us it seems quite unnecessary. We didn’t do it last year, and colleges don’t seem to care that much about it,” Charles Faden ‘22 said. 

States had the option to opt into testing or opt out, with all but New Jersey doing the testing. Texas has already had their testing, as well as Nevada. On the first day of testing in Texas, they experienced technical difficulties across the state. 

“[The] State had an entire year to prepare for today. This failure adds unnecessary anxiety to [Texas] students. Standardized testing continues to fail students, waste precious teaching & learning time, & waste millions of tax dollars,” Noel Candelaria, Secretary-Treasurer of the National Education Association said on Twitter.

Nevertheless, the Iowa City School District is gearing up to follow the state of Iowa’s choice of holding testing. Testing will be held for elementary through high school students. For students doing “onsite” testing, the school issued chromebook is required to be able to take the test, fully charged for the hours of testing. Specific bells schedules were sent out to the students through an email from administrators. By doing their best on the test, a student gains an accurate picture of how much progress they have made year to year academically. I hope students will give their very best effort so they can receive meaningful results back and so that our school can demonstrate the strength of our academic program,” Bacon said.