Previously canceled, STAAR tests are back

A+great+way+to+study+for+STAAR+is+by+going+online+and+going+through+test+questions+from+previous+tests.

Photo by Brisa Martinez

A great way to study for STAAR is by going online and going through test questions from previous tests.

Brisa Martinez, Reporter

Last March students were forced to start online school due to COVID-19 concerns. As a result, the district canceled the state tests known as STAAR and now the test is back.

Teachers and students may differ in opinions, but they can also agree on many things. 

“I think the tests should be canceled because of the circumstances we are in. Not every student and teacher, in a testing subject, are on the same level playing field. There are several factors that are preventing students from getting the same education. For example, wifi issues and distractions at home, ” English teacher Erika Lazo said.

Similar thoughts are shared among students.

“I don’t think they should be canceled since there’s really no problem with them and the students are supposed to be paying attention, but I do want them canceled since many students haven’t learned a thing due to virtual learning,” sophomore Dayna Escarzaga said. “It is fair since we should be learning, yet it isn’t fair since the majority of the students’ health hasn’t been good and has impacted their learning.”

Adapting to new situations can be difficult, online learning has taken a toll on students’ learning and the way teachers present lessons.

“Online learning has not made things easier. If anything it’s made it harder since I can’t find the motivation to participate in my classes, much less pay attention,” Escarzaga said, “I don’t think the classes have been helping me learn as much compared to in-person learning so it feels very lacking even if the teachers are trying their best. I think it might affect some of my scores, specifically math, quite a bit.”

Despite the feeling of dread and worry, everyone is preparing as best as they can.

“The only way I plan to prepare is by preparing myself mentally and learning math properly,” Escarzaga said. 

Whether they are ready or not, students will eventually have to take the test.

“I do not think they are ready yet because we still have a lot to learn,” said Lazo.

Many students feel regret for how they have spent their time during school, while some teachers feel like they could have done things differently.

“We are in the middle of a pandemic so there are things outside of my control,” said Lazo, “I encourage them to engage and listen to their teachers.”

Since everyone seems to be in a tight spot it is always good to have some advice at hand.

“For teachers, it’s to try not to make the kids panic with their assignments because that will make their productivity drop. Also if they notice a student is lagging behind, try helping them instead of getting mad they aren’t doing work during your class,” said Escarzaga, “For the students, it would be to try to be on top of their work so they won’t be as stressed.” 

Many teachers and students have already set down their expectations and worries for the test as well as how the school will handle in-person testing.

“I expect some students will do well if they listen and pay attention to their teachers,” said Lazo, “I am confident that the students who are paying attention and trying will do well. As I said, we are in a pandemic and there are more important things, like our health, that affect how I feel about the STAAR.”

While some believe they will pass, others have already felt as if their failure is set in stone.

“I don’t have any worries besides failing since the school should be taking proper precautions for my health,” said Escarzaga. 

The STAAR test is very intimidating and nobody’s happy about having to take them, but sometimes all students need is a little encouragement.

“Good luck on the STAAR!” said Lazo.

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