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SAGE testing to end as Utah officials select new test provider for grades 3-10

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SAGE testing to end as Utah officials select new test provider for grades 3-10

By Jacob Klopfenstein, KSL.com | Posted - Jun. 7, 2018 at 6:23 p.m.



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SALT LAKE CITY — Utah students will no longer take the SAGE standardized test, as the Utah State Board of Education (USBE) has selected a new test provider for the 2018-2019 school year, officials announced Thursday.

The contract for the SAGE test, which was administered through the American Institute of Research, has expired, USBE officials said in an emailed statement. SAGE, or Student Assessment of Growth and Excellence, started in 2013.

Starting this fall, students in grades nine and 10 will take the Utah Aspire Plus test through education firm Pearson, officials said. It will include sections testing reading, English, math and science, according to the USBE website.

The board approved a new test, known as RISE, for grades three through eight earlier this year, according to the statement. The RISE, or Readiness, Improvement, Success, Empowerment, test is offered through Questar Assessment Inc.

The contracts for both tests are 10 years, according to the statement. The Questar contract is worth $41,565,145, and Pearson’s is $38,678,497, the USBE said.

“Utah Aspire Plus is an innovative assessment solution that is unique to Utah and a first-of-its-kind,” USBE assistant superintendent of student learning Darin Nielsen said in the statement. “It will give students an experience similar to that of taking the ACT by providing them with a score predictive of their college readiness, and it will also support the continued instructional emphasis on the Utah Core Standards.”

USBE officials say the new Aspire test is a hybrid between the current Utah Core test questions and the ACT.

The RISE test will be administered online and will include new features that will allow students to review and revise different test sections.

RISE will test students in grades three-eight on English language arts and math, and will include a science test for students in grades four-eight, according to the USBE website. RISE also will include writing test sections for grades five and eight.

Both Utah Aspire Plus and RISE will allow teachers, administrators and parents to monitor a student’s growth and achievement, officials said.

“I am confident these tests will require minimal transitions in our schools and improved readiness in our students,” USBE Chair Mark Huntsman said in the statement.

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