Special Populations

STAAR will include additional test formats to accommodate students served by special education and English Language Learners:

  • STAAR Alternate 2
  • STAAR Online (with embedded supports)

Students receiving accommodations will take the general STAAR tests on grade level and be provided with accommodations directed by their ARD/Individual Education Plan (IEP), which comply with the guidelines from the Texas Education Agency (TEA). 

For Special Education Students

 The Admission, Review and Dismissal (ARD) committee will decide which State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) assessment a student served through special education programs should take. This decision is based on his/her abilities and eligibility requirements. Individual ARD committees will continue to consider the needs of each student and select additional accommodations and supplemental aids that are necessary to support the student's assessment success. All students served through special education programs must have access to grade-level curriculum. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) has established student eligibility requirements for accommodations, which can be accessed at http://tea.texas.gov/student.assessment/accommodations/

TEA has established student participation requirements for the STAAR Alternate 2 assessments, which are available at http://www.tea.state.tx.us/student.assessment/special-ed/staaralt/partreqs/.

It is important to note that high school students who take the STAAR Alternate 2 EOC assessments will graduate under the Minimum Graduation Plan and may not meet the acceptance requirements for a four-year state college/university. However, students will be able to participate in other post secondary opportunities that will either lead them toward meeting the requirements for participating in a four-year university program or prepare them for a career/job that does not require a university level degree.

STAAR Requirements for English Language Learners (ELL students)

All ELL students in grades 3-11 take the STAAR. In addition, STAAR tests are available in Spanish, when appropriate, for ELL students in grades 3-5. These test versions are available to ELL students who have a maximum of 3 years in U.S. schools (or up to 5 years for previously unschooled asylees/refugees). 

n addition to STAAR, ELL students also participate in the Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System (TELPAS), a federally-required program that provides an annual measure of student progress in learning the English language. More information about TELPAS can be found at http://tea.texas.gov/student.assessment/ell/telpas/

English Language Learners (ELLs) represent a disperse group of students who know English in varying degrees when they enter U.S. schools. It takes a number of years for a student who does not know English upon entry to U.S. schools to become fluent and able to use English effectively and independently in academic settings. Therefore, certain accommodations are provided for these students. For each ELL student, the LPAC determines which allowable accommodations would be the most appropriate. For more information about allowable accommodations for ELL students on STAAR and TELPAS, visit  http://tea.texas.gov/student.assessment/accommodations/