STAAR Testing
STAAR™ : Elementary School

State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR™)

STAAR includes the following elementary school assessments:

  • 3rd grade Mathematics and Reading
  • 4th grade Mathematics, Reading and Writing 
  • 5th grade Mathematics, Reading and Science

STAAR Testing Dates for Elementary
TEA's Assessment Calendar

What's Different About STAAR™?

STAAR includes more difficult testing methods and requires a higher level of student performance. Assessments have increased in length for most grades and subjects. In reading, greater emphasis is placed on critical analysis of passages rather than literal understanding. The writing test requires two essays in both first-person and expository styles. On the science and mathematics tests, STAAR includes a type of open-ended question known as a griddable item. The purpose of griddable items is to allow students to develop answers independently without being influenced by answer choices provided with the questions (commonly known as multiple-choice). Most science and mathematics assessments include three to five griddable items. Illustrations of the test design for grades 3-8 are available at

Performance standards for STAAR at grades 3–8 were set in fall 2012 after the first spring administration of STAAR.

How does STAAR™ affect promotion to the next grade level?

Students in grade 5 must pass the STAAR reading test to be promoted to the next grade.

Districts are required to provide accelerated instruction to any student who fails a STAAR assessment, whether in grades 3-8 or high school.

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