AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has canceled the state’s requirement for high-stakes standardized testing as public schools face the prospect of long-term closures to combat the coronavirus.
Abbott’s Monday morning announcement said he’s also asking the federal government to waive its education testing requirements for the school year.
For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia.
The vast majority of people recover from the new virus. According to the World Health Organization, people with mild illness recover in about two weeks, while those with more severe illness may take three to six weeks to recover.
The State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, also known as STAAR, is the state-mandated test given annually to students from elementary through high school. Several state lawmakers and education groups had urged Abbott to cancel this year’s tests.
Abbott said he’s also working with Texas education officials on ways to keep teaching students while they are out or schools are closed to ensure they will be ready for he next grade level.