Company gets 'F': Computer glitch thwarts state math test

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Thousands of Minnesota students on Tuesday were poised to take an online math test that they had spent much of the school year preparing for, but a technology failure canceled the assessment.

A computer problem at testing contractor American Institutes of Research meant students could not take the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments online, said Charlene Briner, chief of staff for the Minnesota Department of Education, the Pioneer Press reported.

The problem was with the vendor, not school technology, she said, calling the incident "unacceptable."

State officials contract with AIR to administer the test to students in elementary through high school. The test measures whether students meet state academic standards.

Jon Cohen, executive vice president of American Institutes for Research said system engineers identified the cause of the slowdown and do not expect any more problems, the Star Tribune reported.

“I am confident testing is going to be just fine tomorrow,” he told the newspaper Tuesday night.

The problem affected about 15,000 students Tuesday, many of whom experienced computer slow-downs and some of whom were forced to end their test sessions before they were done with the exams, the Star Tribune reported.

Schools were arranging to try the test again Wednesday or later, the newspaper reported.

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