State to monitor CRCT process - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

State to monitor CRCT process

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By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) –  When Dougherty County students take their Criterion Referenced Competency Tests in two weeks, there will be a lot of people watching.

State monitors will carefully scrutinize the process in eight schools that had the highest numbers of suspicious test answer erasures during a recent state analysis. But there will also be watchful eyes in other schools.

In an effort to be open about the process, some of the principals have approached civic groups and community leaders to come and walk the hallways during the tests so they can see exactly what goes on inside the classrooms.

When the CRCT's hit the desks in Dougherty County classrooms April 12th, community members will be watching. At the International Studies Elementary Magnet School Dougherty County Rotary Members will be walking the halls.

"We will be observing that it's quiet in the halls, that the appropriate testing atmosphere is in place, and then if needed we can observe if things are passed out or taken up," said Dougherty County Rotary President Mary Ligon.

That's because eight of the systems 17 elementary schools were found to have a severe number of erasures while six more had moderate erasures on last years tests. While that investigation is still ongoing, it's peaked the community's interest, and Rotary put out the call for volunteers.

"All of us have a stake in making education better. All of us want to see our children succeed and if we can be some small part of that I'm delighted to do it,"   said Rotary Member Karen Kemp.

While International Studies didn't make the list for severe or moderate concern in the erasure analysis, the school's principal Dr. Zeda George still wanted to give the community an opportunity to see the process in action.

"Whether you have children actually in the school system or not, this is our school system and it is the responsibility of every member of the community to be involved so we can make it as good of a school system as it can be," said Ligon.

International studies isn't the only school, monitors will be walking the halls in many schools, peering into classrooms and organizations say it's important to get involved.

"I think as a community its very important that we, we become part of the solution and not be part of the problem and not sit back and criticize when we're not willing to get personally involved," said  Kemp.

They look at it as an investment in the future, that could pay off for decades to come.

School officials say Mayor Willie Adams and City Administrator Al Lott are also among the list of city leaders that have been asked to look in on classrooms and the process.

Dougherty County students will take the CRCT's between April 12th and April 22nd.

School officials say because of the erasure analysis, teachers won't be permitted to test their own students.

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