The STAAR is a Texas only test that tests students grades 3-12 on what they have learned in reading, writing, math, science, and social studies. Every year everyone takes the reading and math STAAR but the writing, science, and social studies test are alternate depending on what grade you are in. The STAAR test was first introduced in 2011 and first used in 2012 but there have many versions of the test before. Through all these variations of this form of testing should we still use it?
I’m not saying that the STAAR test is boring and we shouldn’t have it, instead I don’t think we need it because there are better less time-consuming ways to see how students are learning and how teachers are teaching. Most of the tests that I take are around 20-40 questions long and take me about 30 minutes to complete. Why should a STAAR test take 4 hours to complete? In a STAAR time limit PDF, I found, it said that for each grade it is designed for it to be completed in a time limit that is under 4 hours. Also, a good way to see how kids are doing is checking their grades and if they have low grades because of the teacher just monitor the teacher and if the teacher isn’t teaching well the monitor can request that the teacher get more training.
There also seems to be physical reactions due to the stress of the STAAR test. According to a recent op-ed by Jeff Wheatcraft, he states that “…many teachers from around the state who know the pain and suffering the STAAR test has caused. They tell me about students becoming sick, stressing out, vomiting; about teachers losing faith in their ability to teach because they are required to teach to a test, feeling threatened by job stress.”
If there is really anything bad about the STAAR it’s the point of taking it. There is always a better way to see a students performance results rather than taking a pointless test every year.