TAKS Reward Parties Violate TEA Rules

Pizza parties, field trips and other rewards for students who pass the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills may violate education privacy laws by inadvertently outing students who fail.

That's according to Texas Education Commissioner Robert Scott, who warned school supierintendents in a letter released yesterday.

Scott says the vast majority of students pass the test. Honoring them, by process of elimination, makes it easy to identify students who fail.

Scott says he recognizes that motivational efforts are intended to encourage better performances on the test. But he says they have a negative effect on those who are not rewarded.