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Business Group Wants STAAR Revamped

Jason Wiseman/Texas Tribune

A business lobbying group that’s been a big supporter of the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR exams, has called for some changes, saying that the program may have gone overboard in trying to introduce accountability so quickly.

The Texas Association of Business wants to reduce the number of tests a high school senior needs to pass in order to graduate, and to push the entire program’s full implementation back three years.

“Only 25 percent of those who graduate graduate career- or college-ready, meaning that they could go to a community college without taking remedial courses,” said association President Bill Hammond.

Hammond says his group still supports the overall testing framework, but that it needs to be simplified.

Starting this school year, a student’s score on the STAAR exam was supposed to affect 15 percent of his or her final grade. But the state is allowing school districts to apply for a waiver to the rule.

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