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Eye On Boise

SBAC grading vendors are getting $12.1M over three years, despite delays; they had low bid

Idaho will pay $12.1 million to the vendors who have struggled to grade the state’s new standardized student test, reports Idaho Education News. The vendor group, headed by American Institutes for Research, has released statewide test results, but district-by-district scores will not be released until October. Students took the SBAC test between March 30 and May 22, writes Kevin Richert of Idaho EdNews. The vendors were supposed to provide test results within 10 days, but that deadline came and went without results, and schools closed for the summer without knowing how their students fared on the exams. State superintendent Sherri Ybarra – who inherited the AIR contract from her successor, Tom Luna – has declined to seek penalties over the delays.

That’s left school districts trying to figure out how to get test results to parents before the start of the new school year. The Boise School District is sending out results, at a cost of at least $10,000, Richert reports; this week, the Blaine County School District said it would follow suit.

Idaho EdNews filed a public records request and reviewed the bids for the test grading contract. They yielded the total that AIR will be paid by Idaho, along with the higher bids of five other bidders, which ranged from $13.7 million to $16.8 million. Richert’s full report is online here.



Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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