San Antonio- The test scores are in and according to the Texas Education Agency it appears as if the majority of students did well. But for those that failed, school districts are scrambling to notify their students about the results and in time for the STARR summer school program.
“The teachers were working us really hard, and we thought it was going to be harder than we thought.,” explained Alyssa Cortez , a 15-year old student who attends Marshall High School at Northside Independent School District (NISD).
She is among thousands of freshmen across Texas who took the new End of Course (EOC) STARR test.
“I thought I was going to pass on English but I didn't,” said Cortez.
She is also among thousands throughout the state who did not pass and is now attending a free summer school tutorial course that will prepare her to re-take the test next month.
According to Pascual Gonzalez, the spokesperson for NISD, “Our counselor's have been scrambling for the last four or five days getting in touch with students to let them know and to explain to them about the accelerated summer school”.
Gonzalez goes on to say that the state has mandated every school district in Texas to offer the class free and at the students' school.
“The challenge for all school administrators is to first of all open 12 schools during the summer, 12 major comprehensive high schools that are huge buildings as well as to hire the right mix of teachers,” said Gonzalez.
Twenty-one hundred of last years freshmen at NISD have signed up to attend the STARR summer school program that starts on Wednesday. But school officials still don't know how many more may show up as well. Not knowing means the scrambling may continue to make sure they have enough teachers in the subjects that are needed.
But, for Cortez, she says there could have been a better solution.
“I think they should have just passed us since it was our first time, and we didn't know what we were doing, but I just had to get it over with”.
School districts are also required by the state to pay for the special summer session without state assistance. For NISD, that total comes out to $750,000. It's being taken out of the school district's savings.