Posted on January 30, 2013 at 6:27 AM
Wednesday, Jan 30 at 7:28 AM
AUSTIN -- The latest round of test results from the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness exam, STAAR, have been released.
Students took the controversial STAAR last spring. It was the first time for the test, and it showed students in Texas are struggling.
Those who failed took it again in the fall. According to the Texas Education Agency, passing rates among the 9th graders, who are now in 10th grade, jumped 10 percent overall with the second round of testing.
- In Biology: 91 percent met state standards.
- In World Geography and Algebra: nearly 85 percent passed.
- In Writing: nearly 73 percent passed.
However the writing portion still proved to be the area with the largest gains. During spring testing, just 54 percent met state standards.
The test scores are designed to make up 15 percent of a student's overall grade. Many school districts and parents fought the standard.
"Basically I feel like our schools are caught up in a vice between budget cuts on the one hand and this kind of testing craziness," said parent Mike Corwin.
Districts are fighting for change in the ongoing lawsuit on school finance. The Austin School District is among them. Officials at AISD claim that the budget cuts enacted in the last legislative session took away necessary resources to meet the new state standards.
“AISD wanted to join with all the other school districts across the state who are seeking more resources to help our ever changing, challenging demographic of students to meet the standards the state has set,” explained Edna Ramon Butts of AISD.
Education Commissioner Michael Williams signed documents in the fall which will keep STAAR test scores from counting toward the final grade for high school students this school year. It will be the second year in a row for such a waiver.
Several bills have been filed in the State Senate and the State House to review and potentially change the standards of the STAAR exam.