Chicago Public Schools cancels this weekend’s High School Admissions Test for non-district students

A hand is holding a pen in front of a computer screen.
Chicago Public Schools is canceling this weekend’s High School Admissions Test for non-district students while it works with the vendor to fix technical problems. (Jamie Kelter Davis for Chalkbeat)

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Chicago Public Schools is canceling this weekend’s High School Admissions Test for students who are not currently enrolled in the district but are planning to apply for the city’s selective and magnet high schools. 

District officials cited ongoing technical difficulties with the vendor’s testing platform. 

The cancellation comes after similar issues forced the district to pause testing Wednesday, when all CPS’ roughly 24,000 eighth graders were supposed to take the exam in school. 

 “We are working now to reschedule all students who were scheduled to test this weekend and will share updates to families as soon as possible,” district spokesperson Samantha Hart said in a statement. 

The district said it is working with the vendor, Riverside Assessments, LLC, to solve the technical problems and to provide new testing dates “for students who were impacted by the vendor’s technical issues.” 

In July, the Board of Education authorized a $1.2 million no-bid contract with Riverside, in part to provide testing materials for the HSAT. 

The vendor’s website Thursday included a note that it was aware schools in several regions were unable to log in or complete testing and that a team is “working around the clock to resolve this issue.”

Applications for next school year are currently due Nov. 9. In previous years, CPS has extended the deadline. 

The glitches Wednesday prevented students from logging into the testing platform to take the exam, school leaders told Chalkbeat. Some students at one North Side school also encountered some Spanish words on their exam and needed teachers to translate, according to an administrator. 

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Becky Vevea is the bureau chief for Chalkbeat Chicago. Contact Becky at bvevea@chalkbeat.org.

Reema Amin is a reporter covering Chicago Public Schools. Contact Reema at ramin@chalkbeat.org.

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