Don’t Call it a Comeback

At the end of June, Pearson signed a two-year, $40 million contract to takeover the failed TNReady test. This is the third vendor in the five year history of the new, supposedly better test.

This is a role Pearson has played before. When the first TNReady vendor, Measurement, Inc. failed to deliver, Pearson came to the rescue. The effort earned the testing giant $18.5 million.

Here’s the problem: Pearson seems to have a habit of failing to keep student data secure. Two recent stories out of Illinois and Nevada raise questions about the ability of Pearson to protect student information.

From the Kane County Chronicle in Illinois:


Both school districts have notified parents that they recently learned from Pearson Clinical Assessment that the company experienced a data security incident related to their AIMSweb 1.0 product by an unauthorized third party. The districts used AIMSweb 1.0 to track student academic progress and are among 13,000 Pearson clients impacted by this incident.

And from the Nevada Review Journal:


More than 650,000 Nevada students had personal information exposed in a data breach announced this week by the state’s two largest school districts, prompting internet safety advocates to urge parental caution with products children use online.


The breach involved Pearson Clinical Assessment’s software program known as Aimsweb 1.0, which is used for screening and assessment.

This is not exactly a reassuring restart of Tennessee’s relationship with Pearson.

Maybe, though, they can effectively administer an online test without problems?

For more on education politics and policy in Tennessee, follow @TNEdReport

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