Alaska education department asks US for waiver from testing requirements

The Alaska Department of Education and Early Development announced Tuesday that it will ask the federal government for a waiver from testing requirements that the state failed to meet during the 2015-16 school year.

Without a waiver, the failure to meet the U.S Department of Education's testing requirements can lead to the loss of millions of dollars of federal funding.

Susan McCauley, Alaska's interim education commissioner, canceled the state's computer-based standardized test in April, after less than a week of testing. The test, called Alaska Measures of Progress, was developed by the Achievement and Assessment Institute at the University of Kansas, but technical problems, including an accidentally cut cable in Kansas, made its administration in Alaska impossible or difficult.

The state education department said in Tuesday's statement that it will request a waiver for the 2015-16 school year from two federal requirements: that states annually measure student achievement in grades 3 through 8 and once in high school, and that achievement data be reported.

Tegan Hanlon

Tegan Hanlon was a reporter for the Anchorage Daily News between 2013 and 2019. She now reports for Alaska Public Media.