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Field Guide for Leaders Ervin Knezek, Ed.D.

section 1 | new test - new opportunities the tests STAAR is a ver cally aligned assessment system. However, for the purpose of this Guide it is helpful to consider the assessments given in grades 3-8 and the assessments given at the end of selected courses at the high school level. Content Area

STAAR Grades 3-8

STAAR End of Course

English Language Arts (Reading and Writing)

Reading (gr. 3 - gr. 8) Writing (gr. 4 and gr. 7)

English I English II English III*


Math (gr. 3 - gr. 8)

Algebra I Geometry Algebra II*


Science (gr. 5 and gr. 8)

Biology Chemistry Physics

Social Studies

Social Studies (gr. 8)

World Geography World History US History

* results used to determine career and college readiness

STAAR is designed as a ver cal assessment system: 1. Learning builds between grades 2. Learning DEPENDS on earlier grades 3. Interven on areas are easier to iden fy 4. Differen a on is predictable 5. Growth measures are built in (score and concept) As noted in the TEA publica ons: “The majority of the new STAAR assessments will test content students studied that year, as opposed to tes ng content studied over mul ple years. Doing so will strengthen the alignment between what is taught and what is tested for a given course of study. While STAAR mathema cs, reading, wri ng, and social studies assessments in grades 3–8 will con nue to address only those TEKS taught in the given subject and grade, the content of other STAAR assessments will change in the following ways…The new end-of-course assessments will address only the TEKS for a given course, as opposed to the high school level TAKS assessments, which address TEKS from mul ple courses.”

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section 1 | new test - new opportunities f o c u s , c l a r i t y, d e p t h STAAR is designed around three concepts: focus, clarity, and depth: FOCUS

STAAR will focus on cri cal grade level standards and grade level standards that follow


STAAR will assess eligible TEKS at a level of specificity that allow students to demonstrate mastery


STAAR will assess eligible TEKS at a higher cogni ve level and in novel contexts

STAAR is a more rigorous assessment than TAKS (and TAAS, TEAMS, TABS before that). The level of rigor is connected with the cogni ve level iden fied in the TEKS themselves. Simply stated, STAAR will measure the eligible TEKS at the level at which they are wri en. As noted in the HB3 Transi on Plan provided by TEA, the general characteris cs of STAAR that will contribute to rigor include: The rigor of items will be increased by • assessing content and skills at a greater depth and higher level of cogni ve complexity • assessing more than one student expecta on in an item The rigor of the tests will be increased by • assessing more focused student expecta ons but doing so mul ple mes and in more complex ways • adding a greater number of rigorous items to the test Performance standards will be increased by • using empirical data to link performance in specific courses to college and career readiness • using empirical studies to compare student performance on the new assessments with other na onal assessments • reviewing performance standards at least once every three years and, if necessary, adjus ng them to maintain a high level of rigor • raising expecta ons for student performance on STAAR to the goal of gradua ng students who are college and career ready

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section 1 | new test - new opportunities making the transition – some noteworthy changes • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

The high school STAAR end of course assessments will measure high school course content STAAR is designed as a ver cal system (standards, passing cut scores, progress measures) Gradua on will be linked to performance on STAAR End of Course assessments STAAR items are wri en at a higher cogni ve complexity level - items will match the complexity level evident in the TEKS STAAR will have more items on the test STAAR will have four hour me limits (check TEA documents for specifics) STAAR End of Course tests for English III and Algebra II will contain career and college readiness measures STAAR will likely have more consistent passing standards (cut scores) between grade levels Process standards for math, science, and social studies will be assessed in context, and items will be coded with both sets of standards Readiness standards will be assessed mul ple mes and in mul ple ways The TEKS eligible for assessment will be classified as readiness, suppor ng, or process Greater emphasis is placed on cri cal analysis in reading The reading and wri ng tests will have an increased focus on informa onal (expository) text Students will be required to write two composi ons in wri ng The number of open-ended (griddable) items in math and science will increase Modified and Alternate versions of STAAR will be developed for Grades 3-8 and for all STAAR EOCs for courses required on the minimum high school gradua on plan STAAR will have three performance labels • Level III: Advanced Academic Performance • Level II: Sa sfactory Academic Performance • Level I: Unsa sfactory Academic Performance STAAR Alternate assessments will have three performance labels • Level III: Accomplished Academic Performance • Level II: Sa sfactory Academic Performance • Level I: Unsa sfactory Academic Performance

leadership checklist       

Download and review all TEA documents h p:// Periodically check back for updates (TEA may con nue to revise these) Distribute TEA assessed curriculum documents, blueprints, End of Course Reference Materials Distribute lead4ward STAAR grade-level and subject snapshots (See Appendix A) Periodically check back for updates (TEA may con nue to revise these) Order STAAR Teacher Field Guides (if they didn’t come with this guide) A end STAAR overview sessions (ESC, lead4ward, TEA) to build exper se and confidence of the leadership team Distribute lead4ward STAAR Snapshot Conduct faculty mee ngs to provide an overview of STAAR and review ini al STAAR materials

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section 1 | tools, resources, activities TOOL

STAAR Snapshot

PURPOSE/DIRECTIONS Purpose: Provide a one page overview of the STAAR assessment system 1. Check the lead4ward website for updated snapshot 2. Distribute snapshot to faculty 3. Review the snapshot no ng that it is a synthesis of informa on from TEA 4. Review the considera ons sec on with the leadership team Professional Development Se ng: Faculty Mee ng Staff Development Day

Learning – STAAR Connec on

Purpose: Connect what teachers generally describe as learning with the design of STAAR 1. 2. 3. 4.

Ask teachers how they know when students have learned Share with others in their group Report out Use the completed example to discuss the similari es and differences between TAKS and STAAR 5. Emphasize how STAAR is more closely aligned to what we generally describe as learning 6. Report out

Professional Development Se ng: Faculty Mee ng Staff Development Day PLC/Department/Team Mee ng

Texas Assessment Sor ng Ac vity

Purpose: Demonstrate the increase in rigor between assessments, introduce the concept of analyzing the number of steps necessary to solve as an indica on of rigor 1. Prepare materials (cut apart tles and examples, mix up and place in envelope) 2. Review the direc ons (card 1) 3. Allow 10-15 minutes to complete 4. Review the answer to each ques on and note the change in cognive complexity between tests 5. Note that the TAKS item is likely to be a STAAR item at the appropriate grade level (not Algebra II) in that it matches the level of the TEKS and requires mul ple steps to solve the problem Professional Development Se ng: Faculty Mee ng Staff Development Day

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STAAR: 3-8 STAAR: High School (End of Course)

Opera ng under two systems Two year implementa on plan Awareness to Implementa on

Start date

Spring 2012: grades 3-9 (for students ENTERING grade 9)

High stakes for students entering grade 9 in 2011

Subjects Assessed

TEKS (Assessed Curriculum)

Grades 3-8 Reading: Gr. 3-8 Mathema cs: Gr. 3-8 Wri ng: Gr. 4 & 7 Science: Gr. 5 & 8 Social Studies: Gr. 8

High School Math



Algebra I Geometry Algebra II

English I English II English III

Biology Chemistry Physics

HS: Courses with some students taking TAKS and others taking STAAR Social 3-8 aligned – HS courses not aligned Studies HS course-taking pa erns World Geo World Hist. Teacher content knowledge Cumula ve effect issues U.S. Limited sample items History

In general, all TEKS are eligible for the assessment if they can be tested. Classified as readiness standards or suppor ng standards. FOCUS - CLARITY Readiness standards (30-40% of eligible TEKS): Are essen al for success in the current grade or course, or Are important for preparedness for the next grade or course, or Support college and career readiness, or Necessitate in-depth instruc on, or Address broad and deep ideas Suppor ng standards (60-70% of eligible TEKS): May be emphasized in a subsequent year, or May be emphasized in a previous year, or Do not play a central role in preparing students for the next grade or course, or Address more narrowly defined ideas.

Bundling of standards Pacing and depth Priori za on of standards Sequencing IEPs Concept mapping Teacher content knowledge


DEPTH Readiness Standards 60-65% of the assessment 2-4 ques ons per standard Suppor ng standards 35-40% of the test 0-1 ques on per standard

Mul ple representa on of learning – novelty Teacher concept knowledge Teacher developed/selected assessments at level of cogni ve complexity Evaluate curriculum complexity and bundling

Process TEKS (Underlying Processes)

Assessed in context with content standards and reported along with content skills under other repor ng objec ves (dual coding)

Use process TEKS as organizer for instruc onal organizer Teacher developed/selected assessments include mul ple measures and applica on in novel situa ons

% of items dual coded

Content Area Underlying Processes and Mathema cal Tools (Math)

≥ 75%

Scien fic Inves ga on and Reasoning Skills (Science)

≥ 40%

Social Studies Skills (Social Studies)

≥ 30%

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Standard Se ng for STAAR

Grades 3-8 Fall 2012 – a er the first administra on End of Course February 2012 – before the first administra on Standard se ng (passing score) set as an aligned system across courses within a content area (less variance between grades/ courses)

• Adjust passing standards for all local assessments ( ered) • Grades 3-8 – spring 2012 data analysis • Increase in the number of students not mee ng standard historically correlated with dropout rate

Performance Labels

Level III: Advanced (Accomplished*) Academic Performance Level II: Sa sfactory Academic Performance Level I: Unsa sfactory Academic Performance

* Accomplished for Level III of STAAR Alternate

College Readiness

Standard se ng (passing score) set as an aligned system across courses within a content area (anchored on college readiness)

Integra on of college readiness standards into local curriculum

Algebra II and English III EOC assessments will include ques ons and a performance standard that indicates college readiness Release of Test Ques ons

Primary forms of STAAR released every three years (2014) Sample set of assessment items released prior to 2012

Review sample set Analyze exis ng test banks for level of complexity and novelty Movement between and among assessments in grades 3-8 may create uninten onal gaps A end to transi onal grades

Other Versions of Modified (designated assessments) Assessments Alternate (designated assessments) Linguis cally Accommodated Tests Spanish (3-5) Link to Promo on and Gradua on

Interven on for students not enrolled in the course Gradua on: cumula ve score with minimum score required Rela onship of repeated courses and Retest – highest score used for cumula ve – district determines use elec ve pa erns of retest score in grade Parent communica on Algebra II and English III Recommended plan – students must perform sa sfactorily Dis nguished plan – students must perform sa sfactorily on college readiness component of Algebra II and English III (may retest if does not perform on that component)


Score (converted to district grading standard) on an EOC assessment will comprise 15% of the student’s final grade for that course

SSI – Grades 5 and 8 for 2012 – no retest opportuni es

Local grading policies Counselor transcript issues

School district is not required to use the student’s score on retests Interven on/ Accelerated Instruc on

A school district shall provide accelerated instruc on to each student who fails to perform sa sfactorily on: Grades 5 and 8 Reading and Math Any EOC assessment

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Interven on plans Teacher assignment Alterna ve models for interven on Compa bility with credit recovery models

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The STAAR Field Guides are designed to support campus (and district) leaders as they navigate the course to a new state assessment – STAAR (...