Category Archives: STAAR

Principal brings wealth of experience to Kashmere HS to help exit campus from state’s ‘Improvement Required’ list

Reginald Bush

Principal Reginald Bush knew it was “challenge accepted” when he was named principal at Kashmere High School, an Achieve 180 campus, prior to the start of the 2018-2019 school year. 

On a typical school day at Kashmere, you can find Bush in his signature military-style fatigues, mingling with students in the halls and checking in with teachers and staff to monitor the ongoing instruction happening in classrooms. 

“From the moment I stepped foot on campus, I knew that I needed to focus on supporting the teachers, building their toolkits and modeling effective practices that would quickly move the data,” Bush said. “I built the campus’ culture on the idea of ‘No Teacher Left Behind,’ and I wanted to make sure we kept the human element at the forefront of everything we did with our faculty and students.” 

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HISD’s Report Card: 92 percent of schools earn passing grade on state accountability system 

Kashmere High School rewrites history by earning passing grade

The Houston Independent School District earned an overall high “B” rating by the Texas Education Agency under the state accountability system for the 2018-2019 academic year, exiting nine campuses from the state’s “Improvement Required” list. The district earned a grade of 88.

According to the ratings released by TEA, 92 percent of HISD schools (250 out of 271 rated campuses) earned a passing grade. For the first time, all HISD schools received a letter grade under the state’s new A-F rating system, which was implemented in 2018. Fifty-seven HISD campuses earned A’s, 78 earned B’s, 86 earned C’s and 29 earned D’s. A minimum grade of “D” is required for a school to receive a passing rating.

“We are extremely proud of all of our teachers, principals, school support officers, and area superintendents for working diligently to help our students succeed,” HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan said. “Our students demonstrated significant gains, and we are committed to empowering them to thrive academically.”

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HISD students show across-the-board gains in all subjects on STAAR End-of-Course exams

The percentages of Houston Independent School District students who passed the spring 2019 STAAR End-of-Course (EOC) exams increased in all subject areas of the tests. Students took five exams covering Algebra I, Biology, English I, English II and U.S. History.  

Students at some of HISD’s lowest-performing schools made vast improvements on the Algebra I, Biology and U.S. History STAAR tests. 

There are four performance levels on STAAR tests: Did Not Meet grade level – failed, Approaches grade level – passed, Meets grade level – passed at a higher level, and Masters grade level – passed at the highest level. 

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HISD’s Achieve 180 program receives positive results for STAAR

HISD’s Achieve 180 program finished strong for the 2018-2019 school year, holding two of its biggest end-of-the-year meetings with district staff and campus principals to discuss best practices, modifications, and next steps. 

“As we start preparing for the 2019-2020 school year, we still have a great amount of work in outlining more progressive solutions and assessing the program’s strengths and weaknesses that will better support our students and campuses,” Achieve 180 Area Superintendent Felicia Adams said. “As we look to redefine our approach through the program’s academic and supportive services, it is my hope that we exceed the even greater expectations set for next school year.”  

The Achieve 180 cross-functional team, which includes district administrators, teacher development specialists, nurses, and wraparound specialists, received the first round of positive news as it relates to the turnaround program’s student performance.  

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Preliminary STAAR scores show significant gains in reading, math for HISD students in grades 5 and 8

At least 70 percent of Houston Independent School District fifth- and eighth-graders passed STAAR reading and math exams this year, according to preliminary numbers from the Texas Education Agency. On the math test, a slight majority of the eighth-graders, 51 percent, who passed with minimum scores last year, passed with scores well above the minimum this year.  

Overall, the most significant improvements on the STAAR exams were seen among students who attend some of the district’s lowest-performing elementary and middle schools: Blackshear, Dogan, Highland Heights, Mading, Wesley and Woodson elementary schools, along with Patrick Henry Middle School. 

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How and when to access your child’s STAAR results

Beginning June 12, parents can access their child’s STAAR results and a suite of other resources to support summer learning at home by visiting TexasAssessment.gov. HISD schools will also receive paper copies of the STAAR Report Card to distribute to parents over the summer.  

HISD also maintains a STAAR page on the district website that contains instructions in English, Spanish, Arabic, and Vietnamese on how to access STAAR scores, testing calendars, FAQs, sample test questions, STAAR policies, and much more. There are also STAAR policies regarding testing and tips to prepare your child for STAAR.  

For questions, please contact your child’s principal or counselor.

Spring STAAR testing begins April 8

HISD students in grades 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, and 10 will be taking portions of the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) beginning Monday, April 8. 

Students in grades 4 and 7 will be taking the writing portions, while students in grades 5 and 8 will be taking the math and reading portions. High-school students who are currently enrolled in or have completed English I and II will be taking the end-of-course (EOC) exam associated with that subject. 

The first spring test administration concludes on Thursday, April 18. Additional testing will take place in May and June. 

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Inaugural STAAR award recipient announced


Sam Houston SMTC junior Vanessa Luna Tinoco received the Sofia John STAAR Achievement Award recently for having the most improved score on the second round of STAAR science testing. Tinoco received $600 and a story about her posted on the  school’s website.

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Preliminary HISD STAAR scores show strong gains across multiple grades, subjects, and student groups

Houston Independent School District students showed strong gains that exceeded those made by the state in third- through eighth-grade reading and math, and on end-of-course (EOC) assessments in English I and Algebra I, according to preliminary 2018 State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) scores.

“This year, our students made significant progress on the state-mandated STAAR tests,” Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan said. “We are excited about what these preliminary results mean for our schools labeled by the state as Improvement Required and our district’s accountability ratings. HISD is shifting course and turning schools around. We know that it is critical that we continue our commitment to strengthening the supports in place to further advance our progress in student achievement.”

Overall, the spring administration of the 2018 STAAR grades 3-8 assessment results indicate the district held steady or showed increases in the percentage of students meeting the Approaches Grade Level standard in reading, math, science, and social studies. Continue reading

HISD Board of Education approves recommendation for external performance audit

The Houston Independent School District Board of Education on Thursday unanimously approved a recommendation from the Audit Committee calling for an external performance audit.

The Audit Committee recommended an external performance audit be conducted in order to ensure HISD is utilizing scarce resources as efficiently and effectively as possible to inform decision-making and budgeting by the board and administration for the 2019-2020 school year and beyond, and to build public trust by exhibiting good stewardship of public dollars.

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