Pearson Educational Measurement wins $279 million five-year Texas school testing contract

IOWA CITY, Iowa - Pearson Educational Measurement today announced that it was awarded a $279 million, five-year contract to provide student assessment and testing services to the Texas Education Agency.

The Texas contract, which covers the largest and most comprehensive statewide testing program in the country, includes managing all aspects of the Texas assessment program, including item development, test construction, research and psychometrics, test administration of the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS), Spanish TAKS, Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System (TELPAS) for English Language Learners, State Developed Alternative Assessment (SDAA), and online testing and reporting, among other components.

Receiving test results quickly is critically important. With the largest capacity for delivering large-scale assessments in the industry, Pearson will continue to provide test results to districts for the Student Success Initiative grades within seven working days of the return of district test materials.

"We're very pleased to continue working with the Texas Education Agency on its assessment programs for the benefit of the students of Texas," said Douglas Kubach, president and CEO, Pearson Educational Measurement.  "We bring to our relationship with TEA two decades of familiarity and experience with the Texas program, and plan to continue to maintain our high level of quality and service while working with the agency to expand and modify the program to meet the evolving needs of education in the state."

"Pearson Educational Measurement is a long-time partner of our agency.  The company has a proven track record of providing accurate test results quickly.  Together, we continue to seek innovative ways to strengthen the Texas assessment system," Commissioner of Education Shirley J. Neeley said.

As part of the contract, Pearson Educational Measurement will provide online formative assessments based on Pearson PASeries (Progress Assessment Series) to all Texas schools in the Student Success Initiative grades - 3, 5 and 8. This service will enable teachers throughout the school year to administer online formative assessments that are correlated to Texas standards and provide forecasts of TAKS performance.  By more precisely identifying students earlier in the school year who are at potential risk of not meeting performance standards on these high-stakes tests, teachers can provide earlier intervention and more-targeted instructional strategies to improve student performance. PASeries tests in reading and mathematics will be available in other grades as district options.

Pearson Educational Measurement will utilize its Austin Operations Center to support work on the contract, as well as its Iowa City and Cedar Rapids, Iowa, facilities. Pearson Educational Measurement employs over 300 people full-time and 1,500 seasonally in Texas, and operates performance scoring centers in Austin, Dallas and Houston.

Pearson Educational Measurement will use its comprehensive suite of custom assessment services - PEMSolutions - which provides the ability to create quality assessment instruments, deliver tests both on paper and online, score a full spectrum of test items with a proprietary scoring network, report test results to educators and parents quickly, and analyze results.  These services are provided individually or combined, supporting summative, formative, English language, alternative and other custom assessments. Schools benefit from flexibility in type or mode of testing and are able to test later while getting results back earlier. All PEMSolutions programs are enhanced by certified program management, world-class customer service and a highly responsive account team.

About Pearson Educational Measurement

Pearson Educational Measurement, the largest comprehensive provider of educational assessment products, services and solutions, helps states and large school districts meet the requirements of education reform while using testing and assessment to promote learning.  As a pioneer, PEM has been a trusted partner in district, state and national assessments for more than 50 years.

PEM's full-service offerings for K-12 and other assessment organizations include PEMSolutionsTM (Pearson Educational Measurement Solutions) for custom assessments, both online and on paper; PASeriesTM (Progress Assessment Series) for formative assessments; PerspectiveTM for performance reporting; and a wide range of data warehousing and other educational assessment products and services. Pearson Educational Measurement operates as a business of Pearson Education, the world's largest education company, which in turn is a part of Pearson (NYSE: PSO; LSE: PSON), the international media company. Pearson's other primary operations include the Financial Times Group and the Penguin Group.

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Further information

Luke Swanson +44 (0) 7770 381 704 / Charlotte Elston + 44 (0) 7730 546 821