Dumbing Down Our Measuring Stick: the STAAR/End-of-Course Tests

Mar 25, 2013 by

spbobtitleBy Donna Garner



  • These vendors have a vested interest in continuing to sell their Type #2 curriculum: CSCOPE, Safari Montage, Lead4Ward, TASA iCLOUD, TASA Buy Boards, Bill Gates, Pat Jacoby’s AuthenticLearning.com, Expeditionary Learning, Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Excellence, and many others.  Please go to the bottom of the page to see the organizations that fall under the Type #2 Coalition of Essential Schools.


  • Turkish Gulen Harmony Charter Schools want the STAAR/EOC tests to be dumped because these schools are populated by many Turkish teachers newly arrived from Turkey who have poor English skills.  How could their students do well on the 40 right-or-wrong, grammar/usage/spelling questions on the Type #1 STAAR/EOC English tests? How could their students excel on the English reading sections of the Type #1 STAAR/EOC English tests?


  • Believe it or not, some organizations that are pushing school choice actually want the public schools to fail.  If the new Type #1 curriculum standards (TEKS) and Type #1 STAAR/EOC’s are successful in forcing public school teachers to return to the basics so that students can be successful in all of their classes, the vested school choice advocates would lose their market base.


  • School administrators want the STAAR/EOC’s and the entire accountability system stripped of its public pressure.  Then schools could continue right along teaching Type #2 without the fear of repercussions through publicly revealed Type #1 STAAR/EOC test scores.


ACTION STEP:  Immediately contact all Texas Legislators and tell them to vote against SB 1724, SB 3, and HB 5. The new Type #1 plan of 4 years of English/Science/Math/Social Studies (called 4 x 4) for graduation and the requirements of the 15 STAAR/End-of-Course tests are in the process of being implemented with this year’s sophomores on down.


Texas Legislators must not do anything to hamper the authentic education reform that will be obvious in our Texas graduates of 2015 if the standards are allowed to remain.  Backing away from these standards right now would have a devastating impact upon the future workforce in Texas.


*Definitions of Type #1 and Type #2:  http://nocompromisepac.ning.com/profiles/blogs/type-1-and-type-2-two-completely-different-philosophies-of?xg_source=activity




3.25.13, 8:00 A. M.  — (7 Stages for a bill to become law in Texas)


SB 1724 – Dumbing down high school graduation requirements and dropping many end-of-course assessments (the public’s “measuring stick”)


Passed Stage 1 on 3.8.13 – Stage 2 is to get out of Senate Education Committee —


(The postings on Texas Legislature Online must be behind because I have been told today that the full Senate is to vote on SB 1724 this WEDNESDAY, MARCH 27; that would be Stage 3.)


Authors:  Senators Patrick, Birdwell, Campbell, Hegar, Lucio, Paxton, Taylor


To see Stages for this bill: — http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/BillStages.aspx?LegSess=83R&Bill=SB1724


To see Main Page for this bill:  http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=83R&Bill=SB1724



Last posted action:  Considered in public hearing on 3.19.13




SB 3 – Long and complicated bill – dumbs down graduation requirements/End-of-Course Assessment requirements for graduation, funding of certain curriculum requirements


Authors: Senators Patrick, Campbell, Lucio, Taylor


Passed Stage 2 on 2.25.13 – Stage 3 is vote by full Senate THIS WEDNESDAY, MARCH 27.


To see Stages for this bill:  http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/BillStages.aspx?LegSess=83R&Bill=SB3


To see Main Page for this bill: http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=83R&Bill=SB3


Last posted action:  Reported favorably as substituted on 2.25.13





HB 5 – Dumbs down public school accountability, End-of-Course assessments, graduation requirements


Passed Stage 2 on 3.19.13 – Stage 3 is vote by full House TOMORROW, MARCH 26.


To see Stages for this bill: http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/BillStages.aspx?LegSess=83R&Bill=HB5


Authors:  Representatives Aycock, Deshotel, Davis, John, Villarreal, Callegari


To see Main Page for this bill:  http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=83R&Bill=HB5


Last posted action:  Calendars Committee voted this bill out on 3/20.13.





Asia Society
Assessment Training Institute
Center for Educational Policy Research
Coalition of Essential Schools
Educators for Social Responsibility
Facing History and Ourselves
Harvard Graduate School of Education
Harvard Project Zero
Northeast Foundation for Children
Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory
Outward Bound USA
Partnership for 21st Century Skills
Project Adventure
Public Education and Business Coalition (PEBC)
Technical Education Research Center (TERC)


Donna Garner


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