KBS Reference Desk: Spring Testing

Q:        Our District still has a significant number of remote learners. Will they be required to take the STAAR test in person?

 A:        Yes. For STAAR testing, a student must be present at a monitored testing session and must be supervised by a trained test administrator.

 TEA released its Spring 2021 State Assessment Guidance with testing FAQs on January 14, 2021. The guidance requires that students test at a monitored testing site to ensure equity for all students. However, most test administration dates for the 2020-21 school year have been extended to provide districts with more flexibility to schedule the assessments. Districts may offer additional testing days within the allowed testing window to ensure students have the opportunity to test, while also considering appropriate health protocols. The expanded testing window should help reduce the likelihood that a student is unable to test due to quarantine.

The Guidelines provide that districts may also set up alternative testing sites such as performing arts centers, recreational centers, hotels, or other locations. Students must be supervised by a trained test administrator in a setting where the district can ensure equitable access while maintaining test security.

If the District cannot assess all students during the scheduled assessment days while at the same time complying with local health protocols, the District can submit a waiver to require students who are not scheduled to take that assessment to learn remotely on the scheduled testing day. TEA recommends that Districts use the extended testing window to ensure that the minimum number of students possible are negatively impacted.

For specific questions or additional information regarding the Spring 2021 testing requirements and associated waivers, please see Texas Education Agency, Spring 2021 State Assessment Guidance (Jan. 14, 2021)

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