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Texas House Passes HB 1164 Writing Assessment Bill

04.30.2015 — The Texas House passed Rep. Gary VanDeaver’s HB 1164 today. The bill allows districts to determine locally how best to assess a student’s mastery of the writing process vs. the current limited approach via the STAAR written compositions.

As amended by House Committee Substitute, HB 1164 would add or amend several provisions related to the assessment of public school students in writing and English language arts:
  • The bill would require each school district to evaluate student achievement in writing by assessing students in grades 4 and 7 and at the end of English I and II secondary-level courses in accordance with the TEKS for writing.

  • A district could use any method it deems appropriate for assessing students, including portfolio assessment.

  • A student assessed at the end of English I or II would be required to TEKS for the course as determined by district’s school board.

  • A student could not receive a high school diploma until the student has demonstrated satisfactory performance.

  • The district would provide notice of a student’s performance to the student’s parent or person standing in parental relation.
  • Each school year, each district would prepare a student performance report under this new section. The report would include specific information and be filed with the school board and posted on the district’s website.

The bill now goes to the Senate for consideration.