Senator Presses to Make Graduation Committees Permanent

A Texas State Senator is making his case to make permanent special committees that weigh whether high school students who fail one or two year-end assessment tests should be allowed to graduate anyway.

“Even though assessment systems are important–there’s nothing magical about the STAAR Exam” Amarillo Republican Kel Seliger said at the State Capitol in Austin Thursday Morning.

He managed to get the special committees passed during the last Legislative Session. However, those committees will not be able to continue past September unless the Legislature moves to make their existence permanent during this current Session.

Seliger cited a number of examples of students who have benefited from the committees–including one Austin-area student who struggled to learn English–and failed the English II STAAR exam more than once.

“She received a full scholarship to attend the University of Texas-San Antonio–and, she wants to be a physical therapist. Why would we keep Juana in high school?” Seliger asked.

Seliger’s push to make the committees permanent is getting some support in the Texas House–where Houston-area State Representative Dan Huberty is a backer.

“In many of these cases, these students have passed all the necessary course work as the Senator said–that would make them otherwise eligible for graduation, and yet, we’ve decided to not let them graduate” Huberty said.



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