By introducing the A-F system, TEA committed to keeping the same calculations and cut scores for up to five consecutive years. This allows for improved year-over-year performance comparisons. Cut scores use specific criteria. Ratings are never a fixed distribution making it mathematically possible for all schools in Texas to earn an A rating. Let’s discuss Domain 1: Updating Cut Points.
TEA must set cut scores for all domains and overall that correspond to A, B, C, D, and F. To determine where cut points should be set, TEA analyzed historical STAAR (State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness), TELPAS (Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System), graduation rates, and the College, Career, and Military Readiness (CCMR) outcomes.
For the STAAR-related component in Domain 1, TEA received feedback to use both pre- and post-COVID data in its calculations. Modeling shows that using pre- and post-COVID data would still raise cut points from those set in 2017. Based on data analyses, and the impact of COVID-19, TEA proposes to maintain the STAAR proficiency cut points from 2017.
The CCMR component within Domain 1 assesses students’ readiness for college, career, and military endeavors after graduation. TEA recognized the need to align this component’s scaling with the outcomes of 2021. As a result, an A rating will now require a CCMR achievement rate of 88%, this threshold is designed to ensure that a substantial 60% of graduates achieve initial postsecondary success. This step reflects a commitment to preparing students for postsecondary success.
Since 2017, Texas Graduation rates have increased, therefore the Graduation Component for Domain 1 has increased the cut point by 2%.
By establishing consistent cut scores and calculations, the system allows for better year-over-year performance comparisons, ultimately benefiting students, educators, and the community at large. The data analysis, responsiveness to feedback, and adjustments made show TEA’s commitment to preparing students for success beyond the classroom.
Read more about the changes to the A-F system on the ESC Region 13 blog.