BISD Requests Cancellation of STAAR

BISD Requests Cancellation of STAAR
Posted on 08/18/2020
This is the image for the news article titled BISD Requests Cancellation of STAAROn Monday, August 17, 2020, the Brazosport ISD Board of Trustees passed a resolution requesting that the State of Texas cancel the administration of the STAAR assessment and suspend district accountability for the 2020-2021 school year. The request to cancel the STAAR test will enable Brazosport ISD to focus on interventions necessary to locally assess and close the instructional gaps due to the COVID-19 related disruptions. While BISD provided chromebooks for all students and hotspots to students with limited connectivity access, we know that a number of students were not able to complete a large portion of their online work due to an array of issues. An administration of STAAR, coupled with individual district accountability ratings, would not measure student growth or district success, rather it would unfairly measure student accessibility to physical, mental, emotional and educational support in the home. A measurement such as this would not be helpful data to the state, local districts, educators, students or parents. 

Danny Massey, Superintendent of Schools said in a comment prior to the board meeting, “Our Board of Trustees will approve a resolution Monday night to send to TEA Commissioner Morath and Governor Abbott requesting the cancellation of the state STAAR exam. Many groups have supported using the test as a "benchmark" only and not having campus or district ratings. Please don't fall for this. We have been down this road before with "what if" ratings from Hurricane Harvey. If the exam is administered, it's scored and graded by TEA. Once it's scored, our students, teachers, campuses, districts, & communities are rated. Our teachers are highly trained professional experts who have the skill and resources to determine student learning gaps.”

In addition to Brazosport ISD’s resolution, a growing number of state lawmakers, public school advocacy organizations and public school districts are calling upon Governor Abbott and Commissioner Morath to move forward with a full cancellation of the STAAR assessment for 2020-2021 and a suspension of district accountability ratings for the school year. Brittany Rosenbohm, Director of Governmental Affairs and Alternative Funding states “I strongly urge Commissioner Morath and Governor Abbott to move forward with these recommendations from education professionals and legislators all over the state. Any attempt of assessing students in the form of a statewide standardized assessment will not only gather false data for interpretation, it will put unnecessary stress on our educators and students during a time when we should be looking for ways to support and intervene.”  

The pandemic is not over. While we are working tirelessly to open schools and “get back to normal”, we also know that the future is very uncertain. Let us allow our educators to do what they do best - educate. We want to use all of the time we have to fill in the gaps of lost instruction and support the emotional needs of our students. Please put the needs of our students above the data and give us the appropriate time to recover. 

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