Cy-Fair ISD Chief Academic Officer Linda Macias told board members during a work session Sept. 7 that the most recent State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR, scores should not be compared to the results from previous years as it is now a different test in essence.

“We always have a baseline, so this is a baseline year. We need to move on from there," she said. "That data compares an old test to a new test ... [that] was so different from what has been done in the past. ... it could easily have had a new name."

Community Impact previously reported an analysis of the district's 2022 and 2023 STAAR passage rates with a caveat that the scores cannot be directly compared because the STAAR was redesigned in 2023.

The big picture

Macias cited the following updates to this year's STAAR:
  • Transition to online-only versus paper versions of previous tests
  • The addition of new content
  • Increases in scoring standard
  • Significant changes in the length of the test
“So last year's test had 36 questions. ... The 2023 tests had 52 questions, and in order to reach the masters level, which is the area that we've been working on to get better, you had to get at least 37 questions correct. That's more questions that we even had in [the entire] prior test,” Macias said.

Put in perspective

In her presentation, Macias compared the 2023 STAAR data for CFISD students to data from other districts in the region and state, and the comparison showed that CFISD exceeded those scores.

For example, grades 3-8 reading and language arts passage rates were:
  • 82% for CFISD students
  • 78% for Region 4 districts
  • 78% for Texas districts
Math passage rates for grades 3-8 were:
  • 74% for CFISD students
  • 71% for Region 4 districts
  • 72% for Texas districts
The full presentation can be viewed here.