When applied to final State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness testing standards, over half of the scores of Texas high school freshmen fall short of passing in five key areas of the new end of course tests. Over 319,000 freshmen students took the STAAR test this spring.

Held up against standards to be used in 2016, the passing rate in biology was only 41 percent. Only 34 percent passed the English writing portion of the exam. Texas Education Agency Spokeswoman Debbie Ratcliffe called the results released Friday “sobering.” She added "we all have a lot of work do if we're going to keep these students on track to graduate on time."

Bill Hammond, President and CEO of the Texas Association of Business, released a statement regarding the results Friday afternoon:

“While the results are disappointing, and in some cases surprising, this also shows us why we need a strong accountability system in Texas. I think it’s safe to say we were all hoping for higher scores, but at least we know now how far we have to go to ensure we have college or career ready graduates. It is a long road, but if we hold our schools and superintendents accountable for improving these results I believe they will improve.”