Legislators Successfully Lobby to Reschedule STAAR Re-Test in Fritch

Following the fire and the subsequent widespread destruction and displacement in Fritch, the Superintendent of schools, Jim McClellan, contacted the Texas Education Agency to see if STAAR retesting could be rescheduled. The Superintendent told Pronews 7 that before elected officials like State Representative Four Price got involved, today's retesting was going to proceed in this very distressed community.

The Superintendent of schools in Fritch made a phone call yesterday, asking the Texas Education Agency to reconsider the schedule of the planned STARR retesting. He believed that the devastation from the fire was a compelling reason to reschedule.

"We were told to call back today and we were given a no again,â?? said Jim McClellan. â??Since that time, we've been in contact with our legislator, Representative Price and TEA has backed down, I believe, under the direction of the legislators, and this has allowed us to move our dates."

Kel Seliger, a State Senator from the 31st district of Texas said that while the test is important, we need to consider the needs of children at this time.

"This test is important, but those kids are what's really important and they need to be accommodated, and they can be accommodated under our system and I think it's going to be constructive," said Senator Seliger.

The Texas Education Agency said that they granted the flexibility this morning for the STAAR retake, after legislators like Representative Price spoke with the Education Commissioner. The retake is intended for students who did pass the test the first time.

"This morning Commissioner Williams instructed staff here at the agency to provide the district with as much flexibility and could consider the circumstances we were facing, said DeEtta Culbertson, a spokesperson for the Texas Education Agency. â??Staff has been in contact with the superintendent and has spoken with elected officials and they have advised us that they will postpone testing this week, and it will be rescheduled for next week.â??

The Sanford-Fritch Independent School District will now have to submit a waiver to the Texas Education Agency if they want to avoid making up days of school and extending the school year into the summer, but their spokesperson says that commissioners in the past have granted waivers in situations similar to this.

Following the stateâ??s reconsideration, STAAR retesting has now been moved to next Tuesday and Wednesday to accommodate students who are currently living in a disaster zone in the Sanford- Fritch Independent School District.