Elementary School Students in Texas: Algebra Ready (ESTAR)
The goal of ESTAR, the latest initiative within the Texas Algebra Ready (TXAR) framework, is to support elementary students in the state of Texas to achieve a high level of preparedness in mathematics. ESTAR is designed to improve overall mathematics instruction and achievement in order to reduce the percentage of students who need math intervention in the elementary grades.
For the past several years, SMU researchers have collaborated with the Texas Education Agency and Education Service Center Region XIII in the development of the Middle School Students in Texas: Algebra Ready. This framework for improving mathematics instruction and achievement is targeted to reach nearly one million middle school students across Texas. Through the success of MSTAR, the state has identified the value of developing a universal screener for grades 2-4 that aligns with algebra-readiness knowledge and skills drawn out from the revised Texas Response to the Curriculum Focal Points. This document, based on the revised TEKS, adopted in April 2012, identifies critical areas of mathematics instruction in a framework for sequencing and developing curricula at each grade level. Furthermore, the content of the universal screener will be organized around foundational, bridging, and target knowledge and skill levels while representing procedural understanding, conceptual understanding, strategic competence, and adaptive reasoning levels of cognitive complexity.