AUSTIN — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) joined numerous members of the Texas House of Representatives in submitting a letter to Texas Education Agency (TEA) Commissioner Mike Morath calling for a suspension of STAAR testing during the current school year.
“I’m thankful so many of my colleagues in the Texas House agree that administering the STAAR test this school year is a bad idea,” Landgraf said. “It is abundantly clear that COVID-19 has presented our educators, our students, and their families with unique obstacles that have completely changed the dynamics of the school year, and our state’s policy must reflect this reality in our schools.”
Earlier this year, Commissioner Morath obtained waivers from the U.S. Department of Education to waive statewide assessment and accountability requirements for the 2019-2020 school year because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. States are required to assess student and teacher progress annually in order to draw down federal dollars for public education funding unless waivers are granted by the federal government.
“If COVID-19 was the reason to cancel the STAAR test for the 2019-20 school year, then there should be no question about whether or not to cancel the test for the 20-21 school year,” Landgraf continued. “As I’ve said before, I am adamantly opposed to testing for the sake of testing, and that is exactly what will occur if the STAAR is not cancelled again.”