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Students to take the Iowa Assessments a grade early in one district
MONDAY, JANUARY 16, 2012 17:19 PM

This month, approximately 220 second-graders from the Ankeny Community School District will take the Iowa Assessments, which were formerly known as the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS), the Des Moines Register reported.

While standardized tests are typically introduced to students in the third grade, pupils from East, Northeast and Terrace elementary schools in the Ankeny District will take them early as part of a pilot program, the news source stated. Through this study, District officials hope to gain insight into students’ instructional needs, as well as gauge the effectiveness of their curriculum and programming.

"We’re anticipating we’ll be able to collect some good information," Dana Schon, the District’s executive director of elementary education, told the news outlet.

While the assessment, which has been specially designed for the younger test takers, will require almost two and a half hours to complete, it will be broken up throughout the week of January 23-27, according to the news source. Students will answer questions related to reading comprehension, vocabulary, social studies, science and mathematics.

In a statement, Stephen Dunbar, director of the University of Iowa College of Education’s Iowa Testing Programs, said that the Iowa Assessments will do a better job of assessing students’ levels of college readiness than the ITBS.