Will Texas Continue Scaling Back Its Dependence on STAAR Tests?

Texas lawmakers seem determined to chip away at standardized testing requirements as the House Public Education Committee on Monday sent out a bill that would significantly reduce the number of STAAR tests kids have to take.The bill would eliminate standardized tests in areas not required by the federal government. That would mean reducing high school end-of-course exams down from five to three -- cutting U.S. History and one writing test -- as well as getting rid of writing tests in fourth and seventh grades. The eighth grade social studies tests would also be cut. The bill now goes before the House for consideration.Texas had long been the key state in the growth of standardized tests in the with former Gov. George W. Bush using the state's model as a basis for the former No Child Left Behind federal law that stepped up testing requirements nationwide.Then a few years ago, the state hit the testing ceiling as a dynamic pushback against testing started to grow. (Read DMN reporter Jeffrey Weiss' history of "How the Texas Testing Bubble Popped.")  Continue reading...

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