States and districts in 2015 have taken on ambitious technology and assessment projects, as they attempt to improve instruction and create higher-quality online exams. Two recent deals are noteworthy.
Mississippi signed a contract with Questar Assessment Inc. to provide statewide testing, in a 10-year deal worth more than $110 million. The state has dropped its affiliation with a common-core testing consortium, but its exams will still be aligned to the common core standards. And in South Carolina, the Rock Hill school system expanded a 1-to-1 technology program to upper grades, purchasing purchasing HP 840 Elite laptops for $5 million. Rock Hill is one of many K-12 systems around the country to invest heavily in devices, betting that they will improve instruction and student engagement.