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News & Press: TEA Updates

Important Updates for the 2018 Spring STAAR Administrations

Friday, April 6, 2018  
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(TEA) Three Important Changes for STAAR 2018 Spring Testing


Medical Exemptions for STAAR

I have heard from many of you asking why we do not have a medical exemption for STAAR like the one used for STAAR Alternate 2. With the implementation of the new accountability system, we are introducing a new process to identify students who qualify for a medical exemption from STAAR due to a serious medical issue. Once identified, reviewed, and accepted by the agency, these students may be excluded from accountability calculations, so that they do not affect the participation count of a school district or charter school. Additional information is being sent directly to district testing coordinators and will be posted on the student assessment website.

Transcribing Student Responses  

Many of you have commented on the strict policy regarding the handling of blank answer documents. I am pleased to announce that student responses recorded in the test booklet may be transcribed onto a blank answer document. Please note that this change is a departure from previous years, as well as information in current test administration materials. Additional information is being sent directly to district testing coordinators and will be posted to the student assessment website.

Classroom Displays During Testing–Reminder

Finally, I am still hearing questions about covering classroom walls during testing. This practice transforms otherwise vibrant classrooms into very sterile, stressful testing environments. As a reminder, we have relaxed our rules around these requirements. While an instructional environment should be maintained during the testing window, it is not necessary to conceal or remove instructional or reference materials in the testing area, classroom, or hallways unless they could provide a direct source of answers for the subject being tested. For example, if a fifth-grade testing room has a graphic of the moon phases, it should be covered or removed during the science test. However, it is fine during the grade 5 math test. When in doubt, talk to your chief academic officer who is familiar with the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) and can determine the appropriateness of posted materials.


Read the entire notice.

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