2018 STAAR Online Testing Issues

 

The Commissioner has addressed the online testing issues experienced in April and again in May.

In April, the event impacted students taking the grades 5 and 8 mathematics, 4 and 7 writing and English I tests.  In May, the event primarily impacted students taking the grades 3-8 reading test.

During the April 2018 administration of STAAR, 41,702 students were testing online.  Of the 278,434 tested students served in special education, 14,673 were testing online and were impacted.

During the May 2018 administration of STAAR, approximately 29,307 students encountered a connectivity slowdown of approximately 90 minutes. Of the 278,434 tested students served in special education, 4,594 were testing online and were impacted.

Waiving SSI Requirements for Students Impacted by the Online Testing Issues

Students in grades 5 and 8 who were directly affected by either of the online testing issues above and who did not perform satisfactorily on the May 2018 assessment, will not be required to retest during the June 2018 SSI administration.

Districts should determine, on an individual student basis, whether accelerated instruction should be offered for students who did not pass the assessment in May. For the 2017–2018 school year, districts are not required to convene grade placement committees based on results from the affected subject test. Instead, districts should use local discretion and all relevant and available academic information (e.g., the recommendation of the teacher and the student’s grade in each subject) to make appropriate promotion/retention decisions for these students.

The complete press release can be found here: To The Administrator Addressed .

For additional information contact your campus or district testing coordinator.

 

 

 

STAAR Alternate 2 Updates

TEA has shared their Fall Update: New Features of the STAAR Alternate 2 for 2017-2018! 

  • Large print student booklets are now available and can be ordered by districts through the enrollment collection process.
  • Student booklets will feature limited color images.
  • An image card set will come with each standard size student booklet.  Cards contain the same images that appear in the student booklet.
  • An Exit Survey must be completed upon the submission of all student responses and can be found in the Assessment Management System.

Revisions

  • Medical Exemption Form:  Under the section, Specific Medical Condition Eligibility Criteria, the form now states that a student meets the criteria for medical exemption if they are unable to respond to test questions due to a “terminal or degenerative illness.”  Previously, students met the criteria if they were unable to answer a test question due to a “chronic illness.”
  • In The Test Administrator Manual, under the Medical Exemption score coding section, what previously read, “The student is receiving non-academic homebound services due to medical issues and does not receive academic instruction,” now reads, “The student is unable to receive sufficient or consistent homebound services due to medical issues.”
  • Some prerequisite skills have been added to the Curriculum Framework and Vertical Alignment documents.
  • The “Confidential Student Report” will now be known as the “STAAR Alternate 2 Student Report Card,” and will include parent resources.

Key Dates

  • NEW Enrollment Collection: October 23rd-November 10th, 2017
  • October 20th- Essence Statements and Test Blueprints will be posted (projected)
  • Last Date for STAAR Alternate 2 Test Administrator Training: March 16, 2018
  • Preview Window: March 19-30, 2018
  • Assessment Window: April 2-20, 2018
  • Verification Window: April 23 & 24, 2018
  • Students who transfer/move to a new district AFTER the first day of the STAAR Alternate 2 testing window (April 2nd, 2018) do not have to be tested.
  • Region 13 will be presenting two free workshops focusing on STAAR Alternate 2 administration

To learn more about these updates, please join the Accommodation Central Community for a Live Chat on October 31st from 3:30 – 4:00.  Visit Accommodation Central to reserve your spot.

For more information, please contact:

Jennifer Russell, Low Incidence Disabilities Education Specialist, 512-919-5206 or email jennifer.russell@esc13.txed.net 

Darcy Schiller, Autism Education Specialist, 512-919-5224 or email darcy.schiller@esc13.txed.net

Communication Connections Conference Website Launch

We are pleased to announce the launch of our CCC for SLPs website.  Find it at https://goo.gl/LrDt95.

Created as a companion resource to our conference, this website can be accessed across all platforms (iOS, Mac, PC, Android…).  As a conference guide, you can bookmark this site in your favorite browser and use it to:

  1. Follow the Schedule
  2. Refer to Session Descriptions to choose the ones that are right for you.
  3. Download and print Handouts. Please note! Printed handouts will not be available at the conference. Links to the handouts can be found in the session descriptions.  Handouts are being posted as soon as they are received from the presenters.

This conference brings you a fresh look on an old favorite!  Join us in learning evidence-based practices on topics ranging from evaluation to service delivery and everything in between.

This conference starts in just 8 days!  Have you registered? We still have a few open spots!  Register today, you can attend onsite or online.

FIE to IEP – the ABCs of a Well-Written Plan

Team workFIE to IEP pictureThere are many aspects to writing a complete Individualized Education Program (IEP). These documents, when well-written, can be assets to the students they are designed for as well as their teachers.  It takes a multidisciplinary team to create such dynamic and effective plans.

This two-day training will focus on combining the details of a Full Individual Evaluation (FIE) with the knowledge of good instructional practice to write powerful PLAAFP statements which will lead to student-focused goalsTeams that include both assessment personnel and special education teachers will benefit from working together during these two days.

Participants will leave with tools to support their efforts for well-written IEPs aligned to the standards.  This intensive instruction will allow time for participant practice, reflection, and  individual questions.

IEP Best Practice: FIE to IEP

January 5 and 6, 2017

9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Register for this workshop, SP1736044, in Ecampus.

For additional information, contact Kim West, kim.west@esc13.txed.net or

Joy Hunsucker, joy.hunsucker@esc13.txed.net

 

What we know about the new online STAAR…

TEA has shared information on the new online version of STAAR that will be available beginning in March 2017.  STAAR A and STAAR L will no longer be used as the online version will take their place.  What we know is limited to the communication from State Assessment:

  • The new version will have embedded accommodations, accessibility feature, and non-embedded accommodations (not in the platform)
  • There will be embedded accommodations for text to speech, language and vocabulary supports, and content supports
  • Accessibility features will be included (TBD)
  • Accommodations students use during STAAR administration will be selected on the basis of documentation in the IEP of current instructional accommodations, routinely and effectively used in the classroom; students will receive only the specific accommodations he or she uses
  • If students’ ARDs or Section 504 committees had selected STAAR A assessments for Spring 2017, IEP/504 plan will need to be updated to reflect each assessment the student will take and the specific embedded accommodations and non-embedded accommodations (i.e., supports that are not part of the technology platform) that the student requires during testing.  It will be a case by case decision as to update through an ARD or through an IEP amendment.
  • The accessibility features that are available to all students in the online version of STAAR do not need to be listed in a student’s IEP or Section 504 plan, unless the student’s ARD or Section 504 committee wants to ensure that the student uses a certain feature.

We have a list of questions as we are sure you do about the new online STAAR.  A TETN is scheduled Friday, September 23rd, 9:00-12:00 at which TEA will share additional information and address questions.  Please feel free to join us at Region 13 in Treaty Oak to learn and problem solve with us.

STAAR Online Administrations Beginning in March 2017

Contacts: Kim West kim.west@esc13.txed.net, Ann Jacobson ann.jacobson@esc13.txed.net, or Ann Jinkins ann.jinkins@esc13.txed.net

Hill Country Summer Institute App Available!

Hill Country Summer Institute LogoAre you attending this year’s Hill Country Summer Institute? We’d like to help you make the most of your time at the institute by providing you access to our app.

Here are some of its features:

  1. Schedule – From the main schedule you can create your own personal schedule.
  2. Speakers – Browse through our speakers and select session provided by your favorites!
  3. Handouts Please note! Printed handouts will not be available at the institute. We are making handouts available for download through this app.  Links to handouts can be found in two locations within the app in the session descriptions and in each speaker’s bio.
  4. Floor Maps – Have our floor maps in the palm of your hand!
  5. Twitter – Tweet about Hill Country directly through the app using this hashtag: #r13hillco. You can also follow the discussions @SLPRegion13.

Our app is available on three different platforms.

FYI! The iPhone and Android apps will sync across platforms and devices.  For example, if you have an Android phone and an iPad, you can download the app to both devices.  You create a profile/login on one device.  When you open the app on the other device, you will use the login/profile you created to access your information.

The WebApp works only online and is device and browser specific.  It will not sync your information across platforms, browsers or devices.

Download the app!  The 2016 Hill Country Summer Institute will be here before you know it!

STAAR Alternate 2 – 2016 Overview

staar alt 2

If you are a first-time STAAR Alternate 2 test administrator and would like to learn more about the planning, preparation, and administration of this assessment, then please join us at the service center on December 14 or January 25 for a day of informational activities. During this one-day optional training, we will discuss:

  • ARD responsibilities, including the Participation Requirements document
  • Allowable Accommodations for STAAR Alternate 2
  • Sample Test Questions
  • Testing Timelines
  • Planning instruction using the Essence Statements, TEKS Curriculum Framework and TEKS Vertical Alignment documents

Please note: This training is designed for first-time test administrators.  If you successfully administered the STAAR Alternate 2 assessment last year, you may consider reviewing the materials on the STAAR Alternate 2 Resources webpage in lieu of attending this training.

To register for this free training, visit Region 13’s eCampus system.

Workshop IDs

December 14: FA1533766

January 25: SP1633767

We hope to see you there!

Accessibility Options for High Stakes Testing- Dec 3 webinar

View Online

Accessibility Options for High Stakes Testing

AbleNet University FREE Professional Development

Wednesday, December 3

School districts across the country use a computer-based platform, such as Pearson’s TestNav, to deliver high stakes tests to students, including those with disabilities. Find out which technologies (keyboards, mice, switch interface devices, etc.) have been tested and found to be compatible to successfully interact with the latest version of this test, as well as discuss the latest built-in technology available to students with these accommodations.

• Time: 1:00 PM to 1:45 PM CST
• Presenter: Cindy Richardson, M. Ed.

Limited space available. Register Today!

Should you miss the live webinar, AbleNet will post the recorded version on their website within several days.

STAAR A Update

Region 13 attended TEA’s STAAR A training on Wednesday, September 24th. The training covered STAAR A, the computer based assessment with accommodations. We learned of the embedded accommodations and accessibility features that STAAR A will provide to students with disabilities. We also learned of the eligibility requirements and timeline for release of more information.

We have attached a one page overview with the most current STAAR A information. We are currently working on a FAQ document for STAAR A and will post that as soon as it is finalized.

STAAR A handout-new

To find the most current information from TEA about STAAR A visit http://texasassessment.com/administrations/STAAR-A/resources/

We will continue to post updates through our blog. If you have specific questions, please call JC Sanders at 512-919-5420 or email at jc.sanders@esc13.txed.net