If there's anything that can fix public education, it's yet another standardized test with a bizarre acronym.
Forget TAAS and TAKS -- get used to hearing about STAAR. (The State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, of course.)
The Houston school district says STAAR is "much more rigorous" than TAAS, and the initial results, which are trickling out, seem to back that up.
Of the 12,000 HISD freshmen who took the test this year, 53 percent failed the writing portion, according to preliminary results that may later be adjusted. Forty-one percent failed the reading portion. Results were better in algebra, biology and world geography, where failure rates ranged from 27 percent to 16 percent.