Arnold & Placek Comments on Local ISD Use of STAAR Results

Written by A&P News on June 10, 2016. Posted in News

Arnold & Placek currently represents four parents from across the state of Texas in Lewis, et al. v. Morath, a lawsuit pending in Travis County District Court seeking a declaration that this 2016 STAAR assessments for grades 3-8 did not comply with the time completion standards of the Texas Education Code.  The suit seeks various relief including relief from retention standards, accelerated instruction, and accountability requirements to the extent that such is based on the results of these invalid assessments.  Earlier today, the Texas Education Agency issued a ruling detaching many of the consequences associated with these STAAR results from Grade 5 and Grade 8 assessments.  Determinations at other grade levels are pending.

Nonetheless, the TEA appears to have passed to local districts the discretion to offer accelerated instruction to its students based on these results.

Arnold & Placek, P.C. urges local school districts not to take any punitive or remedial actions against 3rd through 8th grade students as a result of 2016 STAAR assessments.  Regardless of the Texas Education Agency’s stated reason for detaching consequences from the STAAR, the fact remains that these assessments did not comply with the completion time standards of HB 743 and as a result are not valid STAAR assessments.  Although the TEA has left decisions to local districts regarding the use of the assessments for determining accelerated instruction, any attempt by a district to mandate participation in accelerated instruction or take any punitive or remedial action against a student based on these assessment results would invite affected parents to join the pending litigation and add the local district as a defendant.  This would be an irresponsible use of taxpayer money when the TEA has already disclaimed the reliability and validity of these results.

Tags: , , ,