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Why is it important for my child to take the STAAR?

STAAR assessments are an important tool for evaluating how much our students have learned in a given year. While we believe that a teacher’s assessment is most important, we recognize that data from STAAR can help us evaluate how our students are learning. We hope to have as many students as possible participate in STAAR this spring and are working to provide the safest testing environment possible.

Who takes STAAR?
STAAR is required by state law in

  • Grades 3–8 mathematics,
  • Grades 3–8 reading,
  • Grades 4 and 7 writing,
  • Grades 5 and 8 science,
  • Grade 8 social studies,
  • High school Algebra I, English I, English II, Biology, and U.S. History.

Who Takes TELPAS and why is it important?
Texas annually assesses the English language proficiency of students who have been identified as English learners (ELs) in four language domains—listening, speaking, reading, and writing. TELPAS evaluates the progress that each EL has made in becoming proficient in the use of academic English.

Can students take the STAAR or TELPAS assessments from home?
No. To participate, a student must be physically present on campus.

What adjustments have been made to make on-campus testing safer for students?
The Texas Education Agency has made a number of adjustments to help school districts provide a safe on-campus testing environment, including the option to expand the test window to space out testing. Austin ISD mandates that all students, staff and visitors on campuses wear a mask, pre-screen for symptoms through the AISD app and practice social distancing when feasible. Additionally, each campus principal will have the ability to create a testing plan based on campus space and availability of staff.

Will STAAR results be used for grade promotion for students in grades 5 and 8?
No. The Texas Education Agency waived the rule stating that students must perform successfully on STAAR math and reading at grades 5 and 8 to be promoted to the next grade level. Instead, Austin ISD’s promotion policies will apply.

Is successful completion of End of Course (EOC) assessments at the high school level in English I, English II, Algebra I, Biology, and Social Studies still required for graduation?
Under current law, students are required to perform successfully on EOCs to meet graduation requirements. Although students may have future opportunities to take EOCs prior to graduation, we believe it is important for students to participate in EOCs at the immediate conclusion of the course to have the best chance of success.

If my student completes an EOC course this spring but does not take the EOC assessment, can the EOC requirement for that course be eliminated by an Individual Graduation Committee?
No. Under current law, a student must attempt an EOC assessment at least once before an Individual Graduation Committee can consider alternate criteria to satisfy the EOC requirement.

What if parents decide that on-campus testing is not a viable option for their children?
In that case, we respect your decision to continue to participate in remote instruction on testing days and your child will not take STAAR or TELPAS. For high school students, please note the above EOC graduation requirements.

Will campuses receive a state accountability ratings (A-F) for the 20-21 school year?
No. TEA has stated that A-F ratings will not be assigned for 2020-21 because of disruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, STAAR results and accountability reports will be prepared for each campus and district and the reports will be available to the public.