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Educational Software Thread, CATS tests- testingforschools.com in Technical; Sorry if this is inappropriate but I thought I would give my own personal warning to people to not use ...
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    jahbulon's Avatar
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    CATS tests- testingforschools.com

    Sorry if this is inappropriate but I thought I would give my own personal warning to people to not use the company 'testwise' (www.testingforschools.com).

    This is the third year the school has ran these online exams for year 6 kids and this year the site has went down twice (no warning whatsoever), leaving us with near 100 year 6 kids sitting in our school.

    Their support is non-existant and when we finally get through we don't get apologies- just 'it is down for maintenance'.

    This is certainly not the first year it has gave us problems- and please don't say 'it worked fine for me' because it also worked in the past for us as well. Judge a company on how they treat you when things don't go to plan.

    /end

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    Jamman960's Avatar
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    Having the exact same problem at the moment, was told at 9:15 that it'd be up in 10-20mins followed by "it'll be up shortly" at 9:45... still waiting!

    Ended up giving the kids paper tests instead...

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    jahbulon (25th June 2010)

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    jahbulon's Avatar
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    ha yeah, it is awful isn't it???

    They told us the same! 15-20 minutes, we've waited an hour- we rang, their technical support said the sales person that told us 15-20 minutes shouldn't have done that and that they had no further information other than to wait.

    This happened to us about 4 weeks ago and we rescheduled for today- the kids were out of school for the day and all! This bloody company originally recommended Saturdays for the testing yet we found out they have no technical support on the weekend :O

    The head teacher is ringing now, if she has no luck it is being pulled and we are asking for our money back and paper copies. Also, we're never using them again. Such an ordeal :S

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    Jamman960's Avatar
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    wow very unlucky! we've found it to be stable other than today to be honest. I wish they'd just been honest and said give it an hour... we might have sent the kids away to re-sit another day.

    Now my line manager will have to spend a while manually marking the papers

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    On the whole found them to be reasonable but not exceptional for their availability, my personal biggest bugbear was that on mice with the side buttons (which are almost impossible not to touch at some point during a test) whenever the side button is pressed the test went to a white screen and the test need to be restarted.

    Once some pupils realised this they had to chance to waste multiple lessons sitting these tests it was rife ... we ended up finding old two button mice for the test rooms.

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    jahbulon's Avatar
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    That does sound a bit naff.

    We're just fed up to be honest and so are the teachers. We know other schools have had similar shenanigans and when you have over 100 kids come in, this kind of thing really cannot happen. It is embarrassing for the entire school because parents won't want to hear nor care about some external site being down.

    Back to pen and paper!

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