STAAR testing April 24
Tues., April 24  Grades 3-4 Math
 Grades 6-7 Math
 Wed., April 25  Grades 3-4 Reading
   Grades 6-7 Reading
 Thurs., April 26  Grade 5 Science
   Grade 8 Science
 Fri., April 27  Grade 8 Social Studies
  May 7 -18       EOC tests
Information for Parents

The State of Texas legislature recently changed the requirements for graduation. Starting with this year's freshman class, STAAR has replaced the TAKS test as the state's official testing tool. Students who are freshmen for the first time in the 2011-12 school year will be the first class to be tested under STAAR. The following document explains how these new tests will affect your child, what we know so far about scoring, and what your child needs to do to successfully pass STAAR. Please take some time to carefully read through this information.

If you still have questions about STAAR after reading through this document, further information can be found on the Texas Education Agency website at EOC questions and answers from the Texas Education Agency are located at Sample EOC questions can be viewed at

Understanding STAAR EOC Exams
Instead of taking one all-encompassing TAKS test, high school students will now take a subject-specific and more difficult and intensive end-of-course (EOC) exam at the end of each of these core classes:
English I     Algebra I Biology  World Geography 
English II  Geometry  Chemistry  World History
English III   Algebra II Physics U.S. History

In other words, students will now be tested throughout their high school career, taking a state competency test for a particular subject upon completing that class. If a freshman student's schedule currently includes any of the courses listed above, the student will take those EOCs this coming March (for English) and May (for all other EOCs). Your child will likely be taking tests in English I, Algebra I, Biology and/or World Geography.

EOC Test Score and Final Semester Grades
In classes with EOC exams, 15 percent of a student's grade for both the first and the second semester of the class will come from the score made on the STAAR EOC. This is a significant percentage--it can greatly raise or lower the final grade earned in class. The Commissioner of Education has allowed districts to defer implementation of the 15 percent rule for the 2012-2013 school year. Commerce ISD joins many other districts across the state who have decided to defer the 15 percent rule implementation this year.

Failing and Retesting
If a student does not meet the minimum required score for an EOC exam, he or she will have to take a summer class and retake the exam in July. If the student still does not pass the EOC in July, he will have to give up an elective the next year to be enrolled in an EOC review course. Students will have multiple chances to retest; however, it will come at the high cost of valuable elective classes. So, please encourage and support your child to help him do his very best in his core classes so that he will be fully prepared to ace the EOC tests.

Understanding Scoring
The importance of these exams cannot be stressed enough. A STAAR EOC is an exit exam--a test that students must pass in order to graduate.

However, whether or not a student has achieved a "passing" score will be a little tricky to determine. STAAR actually takes all the scores from a particular subject area (English, math, science and history) and combines them into one cumulative test score that determine whether or not a student will be allowed to graduate. There are four score levels: Unsatisfactory, Minimum, Satisfactory and Advanced. If a student scores too low on an EOC exam, NONE of that score will be used to count toward the cumulative score.
Unfortunately, the state of Texas legislature has not yet decided what range of scores will be for the exams. But, take the fictional numbers below to better understand the method that will be used to arrive at a cumulative score:

Pretend that the satisfactory score in science is 1000. A student taking all three scienceEOC exams (biology, chemistry and physics) must therefore earn a cumulative science score of 3000 to graduate. (That is, a satisfactory score of 1000 times three science EOC exams equals 3000).

Use these pretend ranges of scores for our student examples:

Unsatisfactory: Score below 900 on an EOC--Student did not meet minimum; scorewill not count.
Minimum: Score between 900-999--Student met minimum for use in cumulative score;score will count.
Satisfactory: Scores between 1000-1499--Student met standard; score will count.
Advanced: Scores 1500 or above--Student's score is advanced; score will count.
3000 total points are needed in science to pass.

STUDENT 1: Scores 1200 on biology; 800 on chemistry; 1100 on physics
The chemistry score of 800 did not meet the minimum score requirement and so cannot be used toward the cumulative score. The student's cumulative score is therefore 2300 (1200 plus 1100). This does not meet the cumulative score requirement for graduation 3000. Even if the student is passing all his classes, he must retake the chemistry EOC to graduate.

STUDENT 2: Scores 950 on biology; 1000 on chemistry; 900 on physics
The student met the score nimimum on all three EOC exams. However, even though all three tests scores will count, the student's cumulativge score is only 2850. Since this student did not meet the cumulative score requirement of 3000, she will have to retest in at least one subject to bring up her cumulative score.

STUDENT 3: Scores 950 on biology; 1200 on chemistry; 900 on physics
This student met the minimum on all three EOC assessments, so all three test scores will count. The student's cumulative score is 3050. The student does not have to retest because he has met the science cumulative score requirement for graduation.

Supporting Your Child
STAAR EOC exams will be challenging. Help your child stay on top of the material in all core classes by asking to see homework and discussing together at home the concepts your child is learning. Make sure your child knows you are interested and invested in what happens at school, and reinforce the message that school is a student's job. If your child's progress reports and six weeks grades are blow what you expect, require him or her to attend tutoring. On-going success in an EOC class will determine success on the EOC exam, so don't wait to get involved in your child's class work.

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In partnership with families and community, CISD will provide all students an exemplary education, preparing them to be successful, productive citizens. 

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