Pleasanton: 400 students must retake AP tests

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PLEASANTON (BCN)

Four hundred students at Amador Valley High School in Pleasanton will have to take their AP exams over again due to “seating irregularities” in two of the testing rooms, according to the Pleasanton Unified School District superintendent.

The College Board will invalidate about 500 test scores after an investigation by Educational Testing Service found that students who took their tests in two portable classrooms were not seated five feet apart and were not all facing the same direction, as required, according to a statement released by Superintendent Parvin Ahmadi.

“This has nothing to do with students,” said Ahmadi, noting that there have been no allegations of cheating. “It had to do with the way the seats were arranged.”

Students will be able to take the exams again next week so they can be scored in time without affecting college acceptances, Ahmadi said.

“Our sincerest apologies to all AP students affected by our AP testing mistake,” said Principal Tom Drescher in a tweet on Thursday evening. “We are sorry and committed to helping you get through this.”

The invalidated tests represent 25 percent of the AP exams taken at Amador Valley High School over the last few weeks, according to Ahmadi. Exams taken in other classrooms, 75 percent of the total tests, remain valid and will be scored normally, Ahmadi said.

Amador Valley High School held a parent forum this morning to address the issue and will hold another form this afternoon at 1:30 p.m. and a third on Saturday at 10 a.m.

Some parents at this morning’s meeting expressed frustration about the mistake, Ahmadi said.

“I’m a parent myself,” Ahmadi said. “I can completely understand that they would be upset.”

Ahmadi said teachers will be flexible about end-of-year assignments for students who have to retake the tests. Counselors are available for students who have questions or are experiencing stress, she said.

“They are wonderful kids who did what they were supposed to do and took a test and studied hard,” Ahmadi said.

A similar incident invalidated the tests of more than 200 Mills High School students in Millbrae last year. Students had to retake their exams in August after the Educational Testing Service found some students were seated too close together with some at circular tables.

(Copyright 2014 Bay City News.  All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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