The Testing Coordinator Connection

November 2021

Big picture

Important Announcements

Students Can Choose Their Calculator for Digital STAAR Exams

Recently, TEA shared updated information regarding the embedded calculator options on the Grade 8 Math and Algebra I online tests. After this announcement, we received multiple questions asking about the use of handheld graphing calculators on the tests, so we reached out to TEA assessment officials.

  • TEA confirmed that handheld graphing calculators, including the TI-Nspire™ and TI-84 Plus families, are still allowed on the Grade 8 Math and Algebra I online STAAR® exams. In addition, students may continue to use the embedded TI-84 Plus CE option.
Big picture

Student Retester Information Posted in TIDE

Cambium has populated the STAAR EOC eligibility field and re-tester flag based on the information received from the previous vendor. Cambium modified student information included only in the re-tester file. After November 1, 2021, districts and campuses may review re-tester student information to verify updates as appropriate.
  • Re-testers are students who have not met the passing standard for the STAAR EOC assessments only.

TELPAS Eligibility

  • To indicate that a student is eligible for the Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System (TELPAS), districts must populate the Emergent Bilingual Indicator (LEP) Code field with a value of “1-Identified as Emergent Bilingual (EB)/English learner” in the Test Information Distribution Engine (TIDE).

The system will automatically assign the correct test based on the student’s enrolled grade and Emergent Bilingual Indicator (LEP) Code value. The TELPAS Test Code field is no longer required and can be left blank when uploading or editing student data in TIDE.

District and Campus Coordinator Resources

Additional updates have been made to the 2021–2022 District and Campus Coordinator Resources. Refer to the What’s New page for a list of updates, which include a new Special Administration Request Decision Making Flowchart, an updated Special Administration of an Online Assessment page, information for how to indicate TAKS/TAAS/TEAMS in the Test Information Distribution Engine (TIDE) for online testers, and the STAAR Oral and Signed Administrations Educator Guide for the 2021–2022 school year.


The following forms have been updated for the 2021–2022 school year and are available in TIDE under the Administration and Security Forms module.

  • Accommodation Request
  • Procedural Testing Irregularity
  • Serious Testing Violation
  • Security Oath for Superintendent Part I
  • Security Oath for District Coordinator Part I

For questions or assistance regarding the information in this communication, contact Texas Testing Support at 833-601-8821,, or via live chat at

Proposed amendment to §101.3031, concerning required test administration procedures and training activities

Summary: The proposed amendment would modify the rule to implement Senate Bill 1267, 87th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2021, which removed the requirement for annual security and test administration training for all test administration personnel.

Public Comment Period: October 15, 2021-November 15, 2021. A form for submitting public comments is available on the proposed commissioner of education rules web page.

Proposed Effective Date: February 8, 2022

Updated Calendar of Events Posted

Access the updated Calendar of Events for 2021-2022 here

Big picture

Mark Your Calendar!

Data Cleanup Overview

November 18th 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

  • Participants of this webinar will learn information on the Data Cleanup module in TIDE and how they can use it to resolve test discrepancies.
  • Register here

December STAAR EOC Test Materials

November 15th-19th

  • Test administrator manuals will arrive in district for December STAAR EOC
  • Districts will receive initial shipment of secure and nonsecure paper test materials, including preprinted preID labels.

TELPAS Alternate - Student Registration and Test Attribute Information in TIDE

November 5th-19th

  • As applicable, the number of students registered in TIDE at the end of this window will be used to determine quantities of OBs delivered in a district's shipment.

TELPAS - Student Registration and Test Attribute Information in TIDE

November 5th - December 3rd
  • The number of students registered in TIDE at the end of this window will be used to determine quantities of TELPAS TAMs in a district's shipment.
Texas Assessment - Testing Personnel

Resources and information needed to prepare for and administer the Texas Assessment Program.

Ascender Update Information

STAAR and Pre-coding Updates

TCC is aware of the test precode deadlines:

  • TELPAS and TELPAS Alternate, Submission window 11/5/2021 to 11/19/2021
  • STAAR Alternate 2, 3-8 and EOC, Submission window 12/13/2021 to 1/5/2021
  • STAAR Interim 3-8 and EOC, Submission window 9/3/2021 to 12/17/2021
  • STAAR 3-8, Submission window 2/3/2021 to 2/17/2021

Our teams have been working on the extracts that are due next, TELPAS and TELPAS Alternate. Currently, we are on target to release the first week of November. The extract for STAAR Interim 3-8 and EOC will be released during the month of November.

Recorded Webinars

The following recorded training webinars are available in the Learning Management System (LMS). In addition to the recording, the original PowerPoint presentations are available.

2021-2022 Education Service Center Testing Coordinator Training:

  • Section I - Student Assessment Updates
  • Section II - Assessments for Special Populations

  • Section III - Test Security

  • Section IV - Test Administration Procedures Overview

  • Section V - Key Reminders for a Successful Test Administration

2021 Fall Updates STAAR Alternate 2, TELPAS and TELPAS Alternate TETN

2021 STAAR Released Online Practice Tests

The 2021 State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR®) released tests are available as online practice tests in the Practice Tests Site. The online practice tests familiarize students with the general tools, designated supports, and accessibility features that may appear in online tests. The text-to-speech functionality for these practice tests will be available in December. All 2018 and 2019 STAAR released tests are also available as online practice tests.

Big picture

December 2021 STAAR Administration

For the December STAAR administration as part of its initial shipment of test materials, campuses will receive five pre-ID labels per student testing on paper, regardless of which assessment(s) students are eligible for.

  • Pre-ID labels are sent in Campus Box 1.
  • The pre-ID labels are not subject-specific, so test administrators may use any of the student labels provided for students eligible for paper test(s).
  • Unused labels should be returned with nonscorable materials.

Cambium is working on a process for sending pre-ID labels for only the number of tests a student is eligible for in future administrations.


The District and Campus Coordinator Resources, a collection of webpages, is prepared for its initial publishing at the beginning of each school year. For the 2021–2022 school year, additional updates are planned in the fall and again in the spring.

Analytic Portal

This feature allows users to view, analyze, and download assessment summary reports. Users can disaggregate and filter data and download reports in a PDF or CSV format.

Mary Caywood

Educational Consultant

(432) 567-3266