Correction: It is not the TEKS that will be more rigorous in 2015-2016, instead it will be the scoring of the 2016 STAAR tests.
“The Commissioner of Education announced in August 2014, that a new second phase-in performance standards will be implemented beginning in the 2015-2016 school year. These standards will be more rigorous than are the current phase-in 1 performance standards.”
Will the Commissioner of Education, Michael Williams continue to use the Phase-In plan developed by Pearson Publishing or will the new Testing Company create a new Scoring System?
It appears that the Pearson Scoring System provided the opportunity to determine the lowest passing score after student tests are graded. The STAAR 8th Grade Raw Score Conversion Tables has a red arrow marking the passing 1575, which is the lowest passing scale score for Phase-In- 1 . If this sounds confusion, it is meant to be. The more confusing the scoring system, the less likely parents and others will understand what is going on. I ask TEA how the scale scores were determined and was told that some formula is used. REALLY???
What ever the formula used it allows TEA to determine the % of students that will pass any STAAR/EOC test simply by adjusting the scale score. Notice that for four consecutive years, the starting Scale Score values aligned with the Raw Score of zero are different. Thus each correct answer on the 8th grade STAAR Reading test has a different value each year.
Each year the lowest passing scale score for Phase-In 1 is 1575, but the number of correct test questions aligned with the 1575 scale score varies.
The Conversion Tables shown indicate that Phase-In 2 scoring sets the lowest passing scale score at 1637. This is true except for the 2015 STAAR test, which is 1612. Why the reduction? Has the Commissioner of Education lowered the bar for the Phase-In 2 Scale Scores?
Will raising the scoring standards affect the percent of 8th grade students who pass the 2016 STAAR Reading test?
The answer is maybe or maybe not. As you can see from the Score Conversion Tables, using Phase-In 2 scoring should increase the number of correct answers required to align with the higher Scale Score. But, you can also see that TEA can adjust the passing Scale Score to match any raw score number (the number of correct answers on the test).