Accountability News STAAR | EOC Testing

No, Your Kid Won’t Be Retained for Opting Out (2022 and Final (?) Edition)

The big threat is over.  No longer do parents have to listen to petty tyrants threaten to retain straight A students if they don’t take STAAR. Mind you, there was never a single instance of an Opt Out kid being retained for not taking STAAR reported to us in ten years.  But that didn’t stop the schools from threatening it and the parents from believing it.

But those days are gone.  One of the positives of HB 4545 is the elimination of SSI STAAR passage requirements for 5th and 8th grade.  Since high school promotion never depended on STAAR, we no longer have to say “it’s a possibility, but never really happens.”

Instead, we can simply say, “the school cannot retain your kid for not passing STAAR.”  And even the TEA agrees with us.

Note: It is theoretically possible that a school district could impose a local policy requiring passage as a part of the promotion decision.  However, we are unaware of any districts with such a policy in place currently.

Accountability News STAAR | EOC Testing

No, Your Kid Won’t Be Retained for Opting Out (2021 Edition)

Shockingly, some school officials still appear to be using the threat of retention to compel parents to bring their kids to campus mid-pandemic and take the STAAR.  Usually, when this happens, we go into a lengthy explanation of how retention is theoretically possibly, but practically never happens. Then we walk you through the GPC process to assure your kid is promoted. But this year, showing the school to be liars is even easier.  See, the TEA officially removed all SSI (promotion and retention) requirements from STAAR this year.  Don’t believe me?  That hurts my feelings, but I will indulge you.

Here is the official communication from the TEA website.

So feel brave.  Feel confident.  If someone at school is so bold as to tell you that your child risks being held back this year for opting out of STAAR, laugh politely at them, and send them the link.

Discussion of this article is welcome in the forum.