HouseKeeping Items

Thank you to Christina Trotter, TSNAP president & Irving ISD, Carrie Whitaker, Garland ISD, Daniel Scudder, Alief ISD, and Tami Wiethorn, Waco ISD for sharing lessons learned and up-to-date information during last week’s DTC & Accountability meeting. We gained new insights from each of you about testing remote learners and planning for December EOCs.

The next TSA Superintendent & Strategic Staff ZOOM meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, November 11 from 10 – noon.

Are you looking for ideas on how to improve testing security protocols for at-home learners? If so, then you’ll want to peruse the 30 responses from the TSA Fall 2020 Survey. Read the responses here.

Are you looking for an idea to improve secondary course failure rates? 31 TSA districts responded to the Fall 2020 Survey and the results show higher than normal secondary course failure rates for many districts, especially for at-home learners. Plano ISD shared an idea (in the chatbox during the DTC ZOOM meeting) that maybe worth considering for the benefit of secondary students and additional learning time.

Dr. Dash Weerasinghe, Senior Executive Director Assessment, Research, and Program Evaluation, reported that “Plano ISD decided not to administer standardized semester exams this December. Board Policy was changed to accommodate this as the formula for Overall Grade included Semester Exams at 10%-25% (depending on the grade level).”

2021 ACCOUNTABILITY DEVELOPMENT UPDATES AS OF OCTOBER 29, 2020

December 2020 STAAR EOC FAQ Guidance

Four takeaways from TEA’s FAQ:

  • Testing Window Extension: The December 2020 administration has been extended to a two-week online testing window (December 8-18) to give more flexibility in scheduling and more opportunities to test students.

  • Designated Testing Sites: Districts may set up alternative “designated testing sites” other than the home campus (e.g. performing arts centers, recreational centers, hotels, or any “other location supervised by a trained test administrator”) to accommodate testing and follow current health guidelines.

  • Score Code ‘O’: “For any eligible student receiving remote instruction who does not go to the campus or designated testing site to take a STAAR EOC assessment in December 2020, the district should indicate “O” for other in the SCORE CODE field and “0” under column D in the AGENCY USE field.”

  • ESSA Participation WaiverTEA is pursuing options for an ESSA waiver of participation and “will continue to seek additional flexibility for the spring 2021 state assessments.”

Read TEA’s FAQ here.

SAT/ACT Reimbursement Requests

TEA is opening the verification process for districts to request SAT/CT reimbursement on November 9. The Agency advises that districts should designate a contact person at the district level and ensure that person has Accountability-level access in TEAL.

View TEA’s presentation here.

Texas Success Initiative Assessment (TSIA) v2.0

TEA’s Advanced Academics newsletter includes more important updates on Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board’s TSIA v2.0.

  • The Texas Success Initiative Assessment, Version 2.0 (TSIA2) is set to launch on January 11, 2021 and will replace the current version of the test (TSIA). The TSIA2 will provide a more stream-lined testing experience combining the current reading and writing sections into a new single section, English Language Art and Reading (ELAR).

  • Further, the diagnostic tests have been reduced to one per subject area. Students will have access to test feature tutorials and the ability to send their scores to institutions, free of charge.

  • Last, both students and educators will have access to free instructional and practice materials related to TSIA2 content with the launch of the TSIA2 Learning Resources library (January 2021).

Click here to register for the training sessions. For a complete list of all dates and sessions type “TSIA2” into the Zoom search field.

Breaking News: Tennessee Education Commissioner and Governor call for suspension of academic accountability measures, says teachers and schools shouldn’t face penalties

Tennessee Education Commissioner and Governor call for suspension of academic accountability measures, says teachers and schools shouldn’t face penalties

October 16, 2020: Dr. Penny Schwinn, former TEA Deputy and current TN Education Commissioner, and Governor Bill Lee (R)

said that Tennessee schools and teachers should not face negative consequences for how students perform on standardized tests this academic year due to disruptions from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Though neither Lee nor Schwinn are backing a complete suspension of state assessments or TNReady this year, the two are calling for a temporary halt of accountability measures, or for schools to be “held harmless.” 

Read the full article here.

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May 5, 2020

TEA Requests Comments on the Proposed 2020 Accountability Manual Chapters 1–11 of the 2020 Accountability Manual are now available for public comment. A copy of the proposed manual may be accessed here. Or if you prefer to view the "Track Changes" version, then...

April 24, 2020

Important Updates | K-2 Reading Instruments for 2020-2021 CAOs and Assessment and Accountability Experts: In case you missed yesterday's ECE newsletter blast, TEA announced additional K-2 reading diagnostic options that are free for districts to use. (Emphasis added.)...

April 22, 2020

TEA Posts Optional EOY Assessments, Updates to College Exams, & More TEA announces a new optional EOY assessment that can be administered to students at home either online or in print, updates to College Prep assessments, and more on the new COVID-19 website:...