SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

March 19, 2013

Storm postpones part of MCAS test

By Jonathan Phelps
Staff writer

---- — Some students rejoiced at yesterday’s announcement that the MCAS English composition test was postponed until next week because of the threat of a winter storm, while others were looking forward to getting done with it.

The state’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has postponed the written exam for students in grades four, seven and 10 until Monday because of the “anticipation of severe weather” today.

“I think it was a pretty good move because of the uncertainty about the weather,” said Todd Bucey, principal of Higgins Middle School in Peabody. “Even if one school district were to cancel, we wouldn’t be able to give the test. Everybody needs to take it at the same time because it’s the same prompt for all students across the state.”

The postponement only affects the composition test, and school districts will be allowed to administer scheduled reading comprehension tests.

In Peabody, the dates for the comprehension tests need to be moved because they were scheduled to begin on Monday. Those tests will now take place March 27 and April 2, Bucey said.

Bucey said the reaction about the postponement among students was mixed.

“They seem to be a little excited about the postponement, but others were ready to get it done,” he said.

Ipswich school officials said there are no issues with the postponement in that town.