New Texas Formative Assessment Resource (TFAR) and Updates to STAAR Interim Assessments

Date:  August 20, 2020
Subject: New Texas Formative Assessment Resource (TFAR) and Updates to STAAR Interim Assessments
Category: Student Assessment
Next Steps:  Please share with district and campus administrators


The purpose of this To the Administrator Addressed (TAA) is to inform superintendents and district and campus administrators about the new Texas Formative Assessment Resource (TFAR) and updates to the STAAR Interim Assessments due to COVID-19. 

Texas Formative Assessment Resource (TFAR) 

TEA is launching the TFAR, which is a new, free, optional, online tool consisting of an item bank aligned to the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). This optional tool is designed to support teachers in gaining real-time, formative feedback on student learning as instruction occurs. Teachers will be able to create and deliver quizzes and analyze results to help inform instructional choices such as making immediate lesson plan adjustments or providing specific interventions for students at the level of individual standards. TFAR can be used as part of on-campus or virtual instruction. 

TFAR is meant to supplement and support existing district resources and formative assessment practices. Quizzes built using this tool should be combined with a broader set of classroom formative practices that are part of a coherent instructional framework. 

TFAR will be available starting August 31, 2020. Initially, the item bank within TFAR will contain STAAR released items, but, over time, additional items will be added. Teachers will be able to create their own TEKS-aligned items to administer within the platform. 

There will be a webinar on August 24, 2020, with additional information. To read the frequently asked questions or register to join the webinar, please visit the Texas Formative Assessment Resource webpage. 

STAAR Interim Assessments 

STAAR Interim Assessments, an optional online tool to help educators monitor progress and predict student performance, will continue for the 2020–2021 school year for all STAAR tested grades and subjects. In response to COVID-19, TEA has provided additional support and guidance for districts who would like students to complete an interim assessment at home. 

To see recordings of previous webinars, register for upcoming webinars, and view the frequently asked questions, please visit the STAAR Interim Assessments web page. 

Texas Education Agency 
Student Assessment Division 
Help Desk