[Update] House Bill 3906 Transition to Electronic Assessments: Online Feasibility Study Timeline


May 14, 2020

Subject: [Update] House Bill 3906 Transition to Electronic Assessments: Online Feasibility Study Timeline

Student Assessment

Next Steps: 

1) Share with campus principals and appropriate staff; 2) Collaborate with district and campus personnel to respond to survey


Statewide Needs Assessment Survey 

The statewide needs assessment survey of all campuses and districts regarding their readiness to move toward online testing has been pushed back in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the survey has been adjusted to account for changes seen through the pandemic. 

Participation in this study is highly encouraged, as a comprehensive report would provide the legislature the best understanding of the state’s readiness for online testing and key actions necessary to assist schools in achieving readiness for the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR®) online testing. 

Originally, all campuses and districts were to receive the survey between March and April. Now, the surveys will be launched the week of May 18. The survey invitation will come directly from the Texas A&M Education Research Center (ERC) and the link will remain open for four weeks. 

  • Each district will receive a unique link that will be addressed to superintendents, district testing coordinators, and district technology coordinators. Only one submission per district is allowed; therefore, it is highly advised to collaborate on the downloadable version of the survey provided here and assign one individual to submit final responses within the Qualtrics online survey system. 
  • Each campus will also receive a unique link that will be addressed to principals. It is highly advised for the principal to collaborate with any relevant campus staff (e.g., campus testing and technology personnel) on the downloadable version of the survey provided here before submitting final responses within Qualtrics. 


LEA Case Studies 

The ERC will be conducting virtual case study interviews with 6–7 representative LEAs the month of May and June. Because large-scale online testing will differ based on a variety of factors, role-specific interviews will help the TEA gain a deeper understanding of prior experience with online testing as well as potential future opportunities and challenges. LEAs selected will feature a representative mix of geographic areas, student enrollment size and demographics, and levels of online testing implementation. The superintendent of LEAs selected should have received initial correspondence via email. 

Background on the Online Feasibility Study 

House Bill 3906 (HB 3906) requires the TEA to investigate and develop a transition plan to administer all STAAR tests electronically by school year 2022–2023. A fully electronic administration 

will expedite test results, reduce costs, and promote future innovations in assessments. The transition plan, due to the legislature by December 2020, is subject to legislative approval prior to implementation. 

As previously communicated, the TEA is partnering with the ERC to conduct the feasibility study, which includes a set of recommendations regarding the online transition as well as estimated costs for achieving full readiness within the pre-determined timeline. The ERC studies major issues in education and conducts research in program evaluation, educator preparation, and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education. 

In addition to the survey and case studies mentioned above, the feasibility study will include a review of the state’s previous experience with online testing, risks to the transition, and potential mitigations. It will also include an overview of recommendations for the transition, including estimated costs, policy changes, and an implementation timeline. 

If you have any questions regarding the online feasibility study, please submit a ticket to the HB 3906 section of the TEA Student Assessment Help Desk

Texas Education Agency 
Student Assessment Division