Key group wants school accountability rules eased

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - A top business organization is calling for dramatically rolling back Texas' new, tougher high school graduation standards amid outcry over the standardized test known as STAAR.

The Texas Association of Business said Wednesday that the state should scrap STAAR exams in world geography and world history that had been required for graduation.

The group also backs a three-year transition period giving current students a reprieve from STAAR's full consequences.

Students began taking STAAR last school year and the association has been among the exam's biggest supporters. It maintains that high academic standards are necessary to prepare Texas students for demanding future jobs.

Association President Bill Hammond is acknowledging that the new plan could be seen as a retreat, but said "it gets us to where we need to be."

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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