On Monday, the TEXAS EDUCATION AGENCY released the latest STAAR test results and, while we knew these were coming, that didn’t make it any easier to see them.. The number of students not meeting grade-level standards increased across almost all subject areas and grade levels with notable drops in math and reading achievement.
While these results are disappointing, the pandemic-created challenges that we must help students overcome are now more clearly defined. We now can create strategies how to address learning loss and make sure all Texas students have an opportunity to succeed. This is why student assessments, like STAAR, are so critical.
And that’s not just our view. Earlier this year, the Texas Voter Poll found that 68 percent of Texas voters support Texas using all available tools, including standardized tests, to measure student performance and help address any possible learning loss, even during the pandemic.
Speaking of polls, A NEW UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS/TEXAS TRIBUNE POLL was released last week and it had some interesting findings. For example, only 34 percent of Texas voters think the legislature made the lives of Texas voters better off. This may be because several high-profile issues overshadowed other more substantive ones, and we hope to raise awareness about the important legislation we supported that will improve health care, education, broadband access, workforce development, and pension reform.
Meanwhile, the effort to expand broadband infrastructure in Texas is picking up speed. The Comptroller’s office is working in full force to implement provisions of the legislation and gathering input from stakeholders and other states to identify the best way to structure the TEXAS STATE BROADBAND DEVELOPMENT OFFICE (TSBDO).
They are also working on reconciling and understanding the different funding and mapping initiatives the federal government is pursuing to better understand how the TSBDO can position themselves to effectively and efficiently close the digital divide in Texas.
And Governor Abbott, Lt. Governor Patrick, and Speaker Phelan are reviewing potential appointees to the Board of Advisors which will oversee the TSBDO and appointees to the GOVERNOR’S BROADBAND DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL.
Finally, HAVE A GREAT 4th OF JULY WEEKEND! 🎉