Office of the Superintendent


School Speed Test and Broadband Information

Sunday, September 29, 2013, 3:28 pm

October is School Speed Test Month!

Access to adequate broadband service is necessary to meet the learning needs of students in every Montana school.  In addition, all schools need to be prepared for computer-based assessments in the spring of 2015, and sooner, if you want an opportunity to field test the new assessment in the spring of 2014. The Office of Public Instruction (OPI) has partnered with a nonprofit organization, Education Superhighway, to complete a Montana School Speed Test to determine what broadband capacity your school needs to be ready to meet these instructional and assessment demands. 

The School Speed Test data will help find network bottlenecks, support network planning, demonstrate the need for increased connectivity/hardware funding where it exists, and support your district readiness for the Smarter Balanced assessment system. Our partnership with Education Superhighway will allow you and OPI to easily crowd-source data from any in-school staff member with a free online application that measures available bandwidth to a classroom device.

Learn About the School Speed Test:

  • IT Directors' Session: August 12, 2:00 p.m. - Click to View the Recording (27 minutes, 44 seconds) http://connect.opi.mt.gov/p7anupusfz4/
  • School Leaders' Session: August 18, 2:00 p.m. - Click to View the Recording (30 minutes, 40 seconds) http://connect.opi.mt.gov/p5e8zqpzve7/
  • Slides: Click Here or http://opi.mt.gov/groups/trt/wiki/welcome/attachments/01dc1/Montana%20SchoolSpeedTest%20Overview%209-18-13.pdf

Take the School Speed Test http://partners.SchoolSpeedTest.org/Montana.html

Visit the OPI Technology Readiness (http://opi.mt.gov/groups/trt) or the OPI Assessment (opi.mt.gov/Curriculum/montCAS/MCCS/index.php?gpm=1_6#p7GPc1_6) Web pages for more information.

 Broadband Requirements for Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC):

·        20 kbps/student minimum,

·        50 kbps/student recommended

Calculating Broadband Requirements

“For basic calculations, consider the typical bandwidth draw of 10 Kbps and multiply by number of students for an estimate of bandwidth needs to deliver the assessment in its most intensive iteration. Therefore, 100 students assessing simultaneously could draw up to 1,000 Kbps (1 Mbps) as a reasonable estimate.”  From the The Smarter Balanced Technology Strategy Framework and System Requirements Specifications (www.smarterbalanced.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/Technology-Strategy-Framework_2-6-13.pdf) document.

For more information, contact Colet Bartow, 406-444-3583