State Senator calls on Gov. Abbott to request STAAR, A-F rating waivers

Local News

AUSTIN, Texas (Big 2/Fox 24) – Another State lawmaker is calling for STAAR requirements to be waived.

State Sen. Kel Seliger sent a letter to Governor Greg Abbott this week asking him to request waivers for the STAAR requirement but also the A-F rating system as local school districts navigate through the pandemic.

“I respectfully request that you again seek the same waiver from the USDOE to allow Texas to be exempt from the federal testing and accountability requirements for the upcoming 2020-2021 school year,” Seliger wrote. “The initial waiver request was made to the USDOE when there were just under 2,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state and school were subsequently ordered to complete the academic year remotely. Today, Texas families and teachers are facing the start of a new school year with over 280,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state. I continue to be a firm believer in the need for accountability where public dollars are concerned, but I also believe that this can be accomplished without mandating punitive assessments in an uncertain, and hopefully, once-in-a-lifetime educational climate.”

Seliger went on to say the A-F rating system is not something educators, principals and school districts need to be focused on as case numbers and hospitalizations continue to climb in their communities.

As you may recall, State Rep. Brooks Landgraf also penned a letter to the Texas Education Agency earlier this month calling for a similar solution.

Like Seliger, Landgraf said the state standardized test would hinder students and teachers more than it would help them in the upcoming academic year.

“Now, more than ever, we need to allow our teachers the flexibility to teach their students the way they feel is best. And we need our students to be inspired and motivated to learn, not overcome with anxiety about a punitive test being administered in the most unprecedented health crisis, in modern history,” Landgraf wrote in his letter to Commissioner Mike Morath.

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