From: Belcher, Kim

Sent: Thursday, May 05, 2016 3:39 PM

To: ‘Griffin, Charles’ Cc:;;;;;; ‘Matney, Allison, E (ASSESSMENT)’;;


Good afternoon.

 In a March 8, 2016 email to Dr. Allison Matney, I urged the school district to notify the TEA that Katy ISD would not administer the STAAR assessments for the 2016 term, as they are not in compliance with the Texas Education Code.

Specifically, Tex. Ed. Code sec. 39.023 provides that:

(a-11)  Before an assessment instrument adopted or developed under Subsection (a) may be administered under that subsection, the assessment instrument must, on the basis of empirical evidence, be determined to be valid and reliable by an entity that is independent of the agency and of any other entity that developed the assessment instrument.

The TEA has failed to demonstrate that the assessments have been independently validated with empirical evidence by an unrelated party to the assessments; therefore, the TEA and any school districts that administer these exams are in violation of the Texas Education Code.

Over the course of the last week, we have witnessed numerous issues throughout the State that call into question the validity of the assessments, as well as their scoring.  By the Texas Education Commissioner’s own admission, the assessments are problematic.

 Today, on behalf of the parents, teachers, administrators and especially our children, I ask that Katy ISD lead the way in standing up for our community by requesting a hearing with the Texas Education Agency to request a moratorium on student and teacher assessment for the 2015-2016 school year.  Organizations that lobby on behalf of students have made similar requests.   It is time that the school districts stand up for their constituencies and do the same.

Student records should not be impacted by such negligence and the careers of our professional educators should certainly not be measured by such inept administration.

When this board has an opportunity to do something meaningful and productive with the resources that it has been graced with, the opportunity is all too often wasted.  I encourage you not to pass up the chance to take a stand on behalf of the people that you represent.

 Kim Belcher