For reasons that are not clear to me, we’ve seen a sharp increase in “helpful” parents suggesting the answer to STAAR is to go along and bubble all “A” or all “C” or make some random design. PLEASE DO NOT LISTEN TO THAT SUGGESTION! Bubbling all the same answer will produce data. That data will them be displayed across numerous axes and presented in a manner that demonstrates the deficiencies of your child academically. The teachers and staff will then develop a plan to remediate your child based on this data you have so helpfully created. Electives will be dropped and special state funded remediation classes will be added to your child’s schedule. And when you go to complain, there will be data demonstrating exactly why they are doing what they are doing.
Now, maybe you will convince them to actually look at the answers and see that she chose the same answer. (P.S. If you actually tell your kid to bubble randomly you are stuck with the date – WORST ADVICE EVER). Maybe that will convince them to drop the nonsense, but don’t count on it. Because following the data is the safe play of the lazy and weak-minded. They are safe professionally to just do what the data says than to think independently and say “this student was making a statement when they chose all the same answer.” (Incidentally, you can’t choose all the same answer, because STAAR choices alternate between starting with A and F – now try explaining your strategy when you have to meet with the school!).
So what can you do to effectively refuse the assessment?
If taking a paper administration:
1) Bubble nothing
2) Bubble at least two choices for every question
Both of these options will produce no data other than the raw score.
If taking an online administration:
Page through to the end and submit the assessment. Once the submission is confirmed, you are done. The STAAR Test Administration manual indicates that there are three steps to successfully submitting the test:
We also recommend giving your child pre-written notes or cards indicating that they are refusing (by whichever method you wish) and asking the teacher to contact the parent if they have any questions but not to pressure the student to disobey the parent.
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