Russellville Independent Schools will be sending home a packet of test results with every student in grades 2 through 11 today.

Earlier this school year, teachers gave all students in the district STAR assessments in reading and math and those results will be sent home in packets today.

"We're asking our parents to look over these results, sign them and send them back by the end of the week," RIS superintendent Bart Flener said.

Russellville schools have been utilizing the STAR tests for a few years now at the elementary school level, but are now giving the tests to students in all grades where they are available.

"We believe star reading and math is a great way to track progress as far as standards they are reaching," Flener said. "The results correlates to the KPREP test that they will take in may, but you don't get those results right away."

STAR test results are immediately available and they can be given throughout the year. All students will again take the test again over the winter and once more in the spring prior to KPREP testing.

This will allow teachers and administrators to more accurately track student progress throughout the year.

The test at the beginning of the year will help to achieve a baseline and students will be grouped into three tiers, based on their scores.

See STAR/Page A12

"Students can move up and down in those tiers throughout the year, depending on how they are progressing," said assistant superintendent Dr. Stephen Moats.

The tests adapts to each student in order to find out just what level they are at.

"When the students log in, it remembers where they scored in the content area on the last test," Moats said. "It continues assessing the student at that level or above and as long as they can answer questions correctly, it becomes increasingly more challenging. Then if they get a few right, but then start missing a few - it might go backwards. It finds the level of where the student actually is."

The reports parents will be getting include a cover page with two other pages of colored graph reports. The second page will be the reading results and the third page will be math results.

"We really want our parents to start tracking these STAR tests instead of worrying as much about the one KPREP score that they get each year," Flener said. "We believe that in the long term, parents and students will see that improvement since these results will be tracked over the course of years."