STAAR scores will not be calculated into freshmen grades, Scott says

Texas Education Commissioner Robert Scott announced today that the policy requiring STAAR scores to count for 15 percent of students’ grades will be delayed for one year.

The STAAR tests, which will be administered for the first time to the Class of 2015, will be given in each of the core academic subjects: English, math (Algebra I, Algebra II, Geometry), science (Physics, Chemistry, Biology) and social studies (World Geography, US History, World History). Kerr freshmen who are taking any of those courses in the spring semester will take the end-of-course exam in those classes. They must pass a total of 12 STAAR tests to graduate.

The new testing system also called for STAAR grades to be calculated as part of students’ final grades for those courses. Scott’s announcement, however, means the Class of 2015 will still have to meet graduation requirements for STAAR tests but their final grades will not include the STAAR scores.

The decision followed objections from parents, administrators and legislators concerned that the test scores in STAAR’s first year could lower students’ grades and class ranks.

Next year’s freshmen, however, can expect to see STAAR scores averaged with their semester grades.