Educating Parents About the STAAR
How might we build a site that is easier for families to find what they need?
The Texas Education Agency’s texasassessment.gov is an educational website to inform Texas parents, teachers, and administrators about the state’s STAAR test and how student scores are interpreted.
They needed an online place for families, administrators and educators to find and access information about the annual assessment exams. The existing website for the TEA was extremely complex and it was difficult for these groups to find what they needed.
Communication and version management were key in this project because of the complexity of the content and the high-profile nature of the site.
We joined this project as a sub vendor for an Austin marketing firm that specializes in branding and technology projects for the State of Texas and higher education.
The site underwent strict quality assurance testing on three fronts – Standard Beagle, the design agency, and the prime vendor. Additionally, we had to ensure that the site met state guidelines for accessibility and functionality, which included meeting WCAG 2.0 guidelines and (initially) IE 9 backward compatibility.
Since the initial redesign launched, users have been able to find answers to their questions about how to interpret their scores and how to improve them.
Over the next several years, we have been part of continuous improvements to the site, which included the additional of a Spanish language version, a book finder tool, interactive scorecard walkthrough, and information about the math section of the state mandated tests.