Weber: Useful MAP tests make return to Wellington Schools

By Jonathan Delozier -

Three more tests will be used this fall to help prepare all Wellington students for success on state exams.

Superintendent Ed Weber said kids will once more take the Measures of Academic Progress test, which the district stopped using five years ago.

It’s a Common Core assessment prepared by the Northwest Evaluation Association. While it won’t count toward student grades, it will gauge how ready they are for state testing, Weber said.

“At the moment, MAP will be in addition to existing state tests,” he said. “It’s only meant as a way for us to know what we have to do for our students before they take those tests.”

Students in kindergarten through 12th grade will take MAP exams three times a year covering math, language arts, reading, and science.

“We centered a recent school board work session on three questions,” said Weber. “Those were what we want students to learn, how we know if they learned it, and what we’re going to do if they haven’t. We want them to learn an (Advanced Placement) preparatory curriculum and the NWEA testing will help us know if we’re doing that.”

Also returning to the district next year will be Study Island, online software that will use students’ MAP test results to help show teachers where students need more practice.

Weber said NWEA assessments and Study Island were done away with in Wellington due to budget cuts, causing some frustration for teachers in class planning.

“Teachers want these tools,” he said. “But they feel like if we’re going to start doing this again, we can’t cut it a year or two later because of finances. If we’re bringing it back, they want us to stick with it for five or 10 years instead of adapting every year to whatever the school district can afford. We’ve made a multi-year commitment to the teachers saying this is the platform we want to use.”

Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-647-3171 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.

By Jonathan Delozier