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Discussion on ISTEP exam bill continues

INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana teachers groups and some school administrators are pushing for further changes to an ISTEP exam bill as lawmakers negotiate a final version of the measure.

The parties want a final bill to decouple teacher evaluations from test scores and allow local jurisdictions to craft methods of evaluating teachers. They say they hope legislation isn’t overly prescriptive and gives flexibility to the state school board and Department of Education.

Lawmakers heard testimony Wednesday but negotiations will continue. The Legislature is expected to adjourn in less than two weeks.

As currently written, the measure by Republican Rep. Robert Behning of Indianapolis requires that a new test called ILEARN be in place by 2019.

Indiana students performed poorly on one recent ISTEP test that was more difficult and plagued by administrative glitches.

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