Texas students with disabilities will no longer take modified STAAR exam
By Letters to the Editor
May 16, 2014
Re: “Unanswered questions — Korinna Kirchhoff: Special needs students won’t take a modified STAAR next year, but what will they get?” May 3 Viewpoints.
Kirchhoff writes that Texas students with disabilities will no longer be able to take the modified version of the STAAR exam. She is correct.
Texas is one of only a handful of states that has ever administered an assessment like STAAR Modified. However, the U.S. Department of Education has announced it will prohibit states from using assessments based on modified academic achievement standards in federal accountability calculations beginning in the 2014-2015 school year.
As a result, the Texas Education Agency administered the STAAR Modified for the final time this school year. Beginning next school year, Texas students previously assessed with STAAR Modified will be required to take the general STAAR assessment.
Several testing accommodations will be made available to students. Information regarding currently allowable accommodations is available on the TEA website. In addition, TEA is developing an online version of STAAR that is being designed to assist students who previously took STAAR Modified.
TEA understands the concerns of our teachers when it comes to providing the testing accommodations needed for some students. Despite this federal decision, we remain committed to providing all our students with a strong education.
Criss Cloudt, Associate Commissioner of Assessment and Accountability at the Texas Education Agency, Austin