Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

Local News

April 22, 2014

Is opting out an option?

Parents testing school districts, TEA by keeping children home on STAAR days

By SALLY SEXTON | Lone Star News Group

WEATHERFORD – One local parent has taken it upon herself to make her voice heard.

Michelle Osterkamp, who has two children attending Mary Martin Elementary, began to research the opt-out method after talking with some of her teacher friends.

“One of [my friends] posted a link to an article online about the state of education, public funding and it mentioned opting out,” Osterkamp said. “I was curious so I did a little research and came across the Facebook page for Texas State Parents Opt-Out and contacted them.”

By “opting out,” Osterkamp kept her children home during Weatherford ISD’s first round of State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) testing earlier this month. She made the announcement through a written letter addressed to the Martin principal and assistant principal as well as members of the Weatherford ISD school board.

The movement is growing across Texas with hundreds, even thousands, of parents opting to keep their children from taking the STAAR test.

“Section 26 of the Education Code is very clear — parents are not entitled to remove their child from a class or activity to avoid testing,” Texas Education Agency spokesperson Lauren Callahan said. “And by law, any time a child shows up for class on a testing day, the district is required to offer the test. It’s what we’re instructing districts to do.

“If a child refuses to take the test, we’re leaving it up to the districts as to what they do [with that student on testing day]. The Education Code is not clear on that because it also says they are not supposed to opt out of a test.”

Testing at the fifth and eighth grade levels is more structured, as those grades have promotional requirements attached to passing math and reading tests, said Callahan.

Text Only
Local News
  • NRCS to conduct annual meeting Aug. 6 in Mineral Wells

    The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Palo Pinto County and the Palo Pinto Soil and Water Conservation District cordially invite the public to attend their 2014 Local Working Group meeting Aug. 6, from 10 a.m. to noon.

    July 31, 2014

  • Jordan Paredes Weatherford teen dies following wreck near Brock

    WEATHERFORD -- A 16-year-old Weatherford teen injured in a single-vehicle wreck near Brock last week died Tuesday afternoon at John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth, according to the Tarrant County Medical Examiner. 

    Jordan Paredes, reported by relatives to be in a coma following the wreck, was pronounced dead shortly after 2 p.m. in the trauma intensive care unit, the medical examiner reported. 

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • IMG_4680.jpg Perrin FFA members attend Texas FFA convention in FW

    Members from the Perrin FFA chapter attended the 86th annual Texas FFA State Convention held July 14-18 in Fort Worth.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • shoplift2.jpg Buffalo killer, store shoplifter targets of police, Crime Stoppers this week

    Police are seeking leads on the death of a Mineral Wells man’s pet buffalo.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • Five teens hospitalized after wreck near Brock

    BROCK – Alcohol may have been involved in a wreck Wednesday near Brock that sent five teens to the hospital, including two with life-threatening injuries, according to information from the Texas Department of Public Safety. 

    July 25, 2014

  • 0727 loc pet Molly.jpg PET OF THE WEEK: Molly left behind

    Molly is a 5-6 year old Dachshund. Molly’s previous owners had to let her go when they moved and found out that they would be unable to keep her as a pet, so they brought her into the Mineral Wells Animal Shelter. Molly is the sweetest little dog you’ve ever seen.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lillian Peek Cottage Benefit Golf Tournament is Saturday at Canyon West

    Lillian Peek Cottage Benefit Golf Tournament hosted by The MWHS 50 Year Club is Saturday, July 26, at Canyon West Golf Club, 160 Canyon Road, Weatherford, TX 76087.

    July 24, 2014

  • Kitchen Boot Camp for kids

    PALO PINTO – Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Palo Pinto County will be hosting day camps with a focus on food and fun.

    July 24, 2014

  • 0727 loc Blue heeler.jpg ADOPTABLE PET: Brighten Blue's day

    Sweet Blue is a 9-month-old female catahoula/red heeler mix. She is a laid back and quiet, a medium-sized girl searching for her forever home.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • USDA processes 106,000 payments to farmers for grazing, livestock losses

    WASHINGTON — Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently provided a 12-week progress report on U.S. Department of Agriculture disaster assistance programs, announcing that USDA has processed 106,000 payments to farmers in 40 states across the country who suffered livestock and grazing losses between October 2011 and passage of the 2014 Farm Bill.

    July 24, 2014

Featured Ads
Mineral Wells Index


Click on a photo to visit our SmugMug page

Front page
Seasonal Content
AP Video
House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Must Read