Tag Archives: pilot

Teach the Vote’s Week in Review: Dec. 22, 2017

Happy holidays! Here’s your week in review from ATPE Governmental Relations:

Earlier today, President Donald Trump signed into law a major tax overhaul bill approved by Congress this week. The president also signed off on a short-term funding bill to keep the federal governmental operational for a few more weeks until longer-term legislation can be passed. The final $1.5 trillion tax bill omits some provisions that were worrisome for educators employed in public schools, which ATPE urged our congressional delegation to remove from earlier versions of the legislation. For more on the tax law that was approved, check out this blog post from ATPE Lobbyist Kate Kuhlmann.

Texas Speaker of the House Joe Straus (R-San Antonio) has announced his appointments to two key state commissions. First, the speaker revealed his picks to serve on the new Texas Commission on Public School Finance, authorized by the legislature earlier this year. The House appointments include Reps. Dan Huberty (R-Kingwood), Diego Bernal (D-San Antonio), and Ken King (R-Canadian). Fittingly, all three of the representatives chosen by the speaker also hold leadership roles on the House Public Education Committee: Huberty as committee chair, Bernal as committee vice-chair, and King as chair of the Subcommittee on Educator Quality. Also appointed to serve on the commission is Nicole Conley Johnson, who is currently employed as Chief Financial Officer for Austin ISD. Additional members of the school finance commission were previously announced by Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.

Yesterday, Straus also announced that Reps. Chris Paddie (R-Marshall), Stan Lambert (R-Abilene), and Poncho Nevarez (D-Eagle Pass) would serve on the Sunset Advisory Commission, along with public member and retired accountant Ron Steinhart of Dallas. The commission is charged with overseeing and making recommendations to the legislature on periodic reviews of various state agencies.

Twenty Texas school districts will have an opportunity to take part in a pilot program using locally designed accountability measures. Commissioner of Education Mike Morath named the districts selected earlier this week from a pool of 50 applicants. The pilot program falls under Rep. Dan Huberty’s House Bill 22 passed earlier this year. For more on the local accountability pilot study, view information on the Texas Education Agency’s website here.


TEA announces details of teacher evaluation pilot, submits plan to USDE for approval

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) announced today that it has submitted its formal plan for a new teacher evaluation system to the U.S. Department of Education. Through Secretary Arne Duncan, the federal government has demanded that Texas adopt new teacher and principal evaluation instruments as a condition of a No Child Left Behind (NCLB) waiver the state received earlier this school year. Duncan is using the waivers to compel states to adopt educator evaluation systems that consider student growth as a significant factor in the appraisals.

TEA will pilot the new instrument in 72 school districts this fall. The agency hopes to roll out the new evaluation model statewide in the 2015-16 school year. Under the proposed new system, 20 percent of a teacher’s evaluation will be based on student growth. For teachers of certain tested subjects and grades—primarily math and reading—the student growth portion will be assessed using a new value-added measurement developed by the state. The statistical calculation will determine if the teacher’s students are meeting expected rates of growth from year to year on STAAR tests.

The remainder of the teacher’s evaluation will be based on an observation rubric that includes indicators related to planning, instruction and the learning environment. Professionalism is also an element of the evaluation, encompassing professional practices, ethics, goal-setting, self-assessment and professional development.

UPDATE: View TEA’s May 2 submission to the U.S. Department of Education. It includes a draft of the new evaluation rubrics and standards for teachers and principals.

Read TEA’s full press release with links to additional information here. Stay tuned to Teach the Vote for ongoing comprehensive coverage of the evaluation pilot and NCLB waiver, and don’t miss our teacher evaluation feature in the next issue of ATPE News.