TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Problems continued for some school districts Wednesday as students tried to sign on to take a mandated writing test.
Democrats say test security has been compromised and the test is no longer a valid assessment tool.
House Education Chair Marleen O'Toole commended Education Commissioner Stewart for her handling of the test debacle and urged members not to "throw the baby out with the bath water" or overact to calls from parents.
"And we will continue to be vigilant and monitor exactly what's happening. In fact, when I leave here, I will have another call with AIR just to be sure we continue to be on track," Stewart said.
In Tampa, Gov. Rick Scott told reporters that extra time built into the testing schedule would allow everyone to take the test.
"Many school districts are saying the system has worked for them. The way it's set up is they have two additional weeks to get all this accomplished," said Scott.
But Wednesday, school superintendents told the committee problems still remain.
Senate Democrats have been calling for the test to not count this year. Now they say since some students have seen the test, it is no longer valid.
"How many versions of the test are out there, is everyone going to be on a different one? Because I can promise you this, in the age of cellphones, somebody's going to screen shot a picture of a prompt and thus fore cause complete invalidation of the system," Sen. Dwight Bullard, D-39, Miami, said.
Contractor AIR is likely to be hit with a penalty, but Stewart told lawmakers that it's not likely to be assessed until the system is working.