On Tuesday, the mayor of the tiny Texas town of Devers – population 497 – made a proclamation during a city council meeting that he’s banning the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness test, otherwise known as the STAAR test, in his city. In his proclamation, Mayor Steven Horelica, who’s also a classroom teacher, wrote: “Administrators and teachers have been unduly threatened by the TEA [Texas Education Agency] to increase STAAR scores.”
In an interview with Texas Standard, Horelica says he actually doesn’t have the legal authority to ban the test; the proclamation was more of a “symbolic gesture.”
“The point is that it drives everything in education. At the end of the year, it doesn’t matter how much a student has grown. Nothin’ else matters but, Did they pass? Did they fail?” Horelica says.
What you’ll hear in this segment:
– What rationale Horelica gives for making the proclamation, even though it’s not legally binding
– What kind of responses Horelica has gotten from people in Devers, in Texas and nationwide
– How Devers’ proclamation has been an influence for similar moves in nearby towns
Written by Jill Ament.