Mother claims school forced child to take STAAR test - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Mother claims school forced child to take STAAR test

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Jacob, a 5th grader at Fern Bluff Elementary School in Round Rock, said, "When she said here's the STAAR test I asked her if I could call my mom, but she said 'no.' I asked her again and she said I already talked to her on the phone and she said it was okay to take the STAAR test. I started crying when she said 'no' again."

His mother, Melissa Chamlee, claims she has a legal right to opt Jacob out of state-mandated testing...and the school's administration knows how she feels.

"I called the Monday of the testing week and asked specifically, if they were having make up days on Thursday and Friday and I was told 'no' so I felt it was safe to send him to school," said Melissa.

"We don't support getting wrong information to parents and we apologize for that if it happened, but we could not verify that she actually called," said JoyLynn Occhiuzzi with Round Rock ISD.

I showed JoyLynn the call log from Melissa's phone company.

JoyLynn explained, "I do know what the parent was given and what she was aware of, not regarding this exact phone call, but we were very clear about what was happening that entire week."

Jacob says he tried to call his mom, but couldn't reach her.

"I went in the nurse's bathroom and I texted my dad saying there is a teacher that is making me redo the STAAR test," Jacob added.

"When a student asked to call a parent during testing time, we're not allowed to do that," said JoyLynn. "The story between the student and campus administration are very different. If a student shows up on test day or makeup day, we are required by law to give them the test."

What the student does with that test is their choice.

"I just did like 12 questions," Jacob said.

JoyLynn added, "We cannot say, okay that's fine we'll put them in another room, exempt them from it. We do not have that authority and in fact, if we did that, we'd be in violation of the testing procedures for the state."

"I know he's not lying," said Melissa. "He was very upset when he came home. He's been very stressed out about this whole situation and that was one of the reason's why we opted him out of STAAR."

"If the student felt intimidated by us giving him the test, that of course was not our intent,"JoyLynn added. "If the parent had chosen to keep her child home, then the child would not have been given the test on the day of the makeup."

Melissa has planned a family vacation for Jacob during the next testing window.

The family's lawyer says this could be a potential violation of their civil rights.

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