Nevada will certainly award a nearly $51.5 million agreement for student screening services after dumping its previous service provider previously this year following a series of computer system problems that afflicted the system.
The state Board of Examiners on Tuesday unanimously approved a four-year contract with market heavyweight CTB/McGraw-Hill to develop, provide, score and report the list of standardized tests that thousands of public school students take every year in Nevada.
A seven-member evaluation panel scored CTB/McGraw-Hill’s bid, with an overall cost of $51.48 million, above 10 other rivals, including Measured Progress Inc. . That Dover, New Hampshire-based company failed to repair systemic glitches that avoided the state from transitioning to digital testing in the spring.
Just 30 percent of the approximately 214,000 third- through eighth-grade students expected to take the new tests successfully finished the evaluations, and that failure prompted Gov. Brian Sandoval to question the ability of CTB/McGraw-Hill to carry out any much better.
“Very first time, shame on them. Second time, shame on us,” Sandoval throughout the board’s meeting.
Officials with the Nevada Department of Education and CTB/McGraw-Hill’s proposed subcontractor, Data Acknowledgment Corp., or DRC, resolved his issues and highlighted similar work DRC finished in Michigan and Pennsylvania.
Doug Russell, senior vice president of education programs at DRC, also noted that his company transitioned 10 states with no online screening to a digital system.
“We have not had any issues in any other client states,” included John Bandy, primary information officer for DRC.
In addition, Steve Canavero, state deputy superintendent for student success, discussed that the arrangement with CTB/McGraw-Hill includes numerous clawback provisions that would recover the full part of the contract’s value if it fails to supply the complete scope of services.
Canavero said a new provision of the agreement covers liability for the security of student data personal privacy, though the subcontractors anxiety they presently manage delicate details with other customers such as the Internal Revenue Service and U.S. Department of Defense.
Also Tuesday, the Board of Examiners unanimously authorized a $247,500 loan for the state treasurer’s workplace to construct and maintain a registration program for Nevada’s new education savings accounts.
Chief of Personnel Grant Hewitt said the treasurer’s office already has gotten more than 1,000 applications for that program, which offers about $5,000 for students to attend private school or for homeschooling, considering that early enrollment began late July. By comparison, the education cost savings program in Arizona has actually enrolled about 1,300 students total in its fifth-year of execution, according to Hewitt.
“Our research study shows there have to do with 6,000 open independent school seats in Nevada today,” he stated.
“There are around 8,000 homeschool households in Nevada today,” Hewitt included. “Our company believe about 60 percent of those (households) will have an interest in utilizing the (education savings) accounts.”
The Nevada Legislature’s interim finance committee meets next week to consider last approval of the loan, which Hewitt said will be repaid through a 3 percent administration charge for all education savings accounts.
Contact Neal Morton at [email protected]!.?.! or 702-383-0279. Discover him on Twitter: @nealtmorton.