The SBOE met on June 22, 2023, to discuss the reappointment on the Boys Ranch Independent School District Board of Trustees, proposed amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 157, updates on Generation 29 application process, and the ongoing State Board for Educator Certification activities.


This report is intended to give you an overview and highlight the various topics taken up. It is not a verbatim transcript of the discussions but is based upon what was audible or understandable to the observer.


Item 1: Recommendation for One Reappointment to the Boys Ranch Independent School District Board of Trustees

Christopher Lucas, TEA Office of Governance

  • Motion to reappoint Jacque Branch for another two-year term passes


Item 2: Discussion of Proposed Amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 157, Hearings and Appeals, Subchapter D, Independent Hearing Examiners, §157.41, Certification Criteria for Independent Hearing Examiners

Chris Maska, Director of Hearings and Appeals for TEA

  • Members in good standing with state bar of Texas from 5 to 3 years
  • License has not been reprimanded privately or publicly from 5 to 3 years
  • Requirement that one has been involved in civil litigation, administrative law, school law, or labor law; suggestion to add family law, criminal law, or personal injury law
  • Difficulty finding up in the panhandle, specifically El Paso, changing rules may help to find more people for hearing examiner role
  • Hickman – This is a no motion or action?
    • Right, this is telling us do you think we should, next meeting come back and propose this for first reading if changes are wanting to be made
  • Hickman – Could you explain what an independent hearing examiner does?
    • We have three types of contracts for teachers in Texas, probationary contracts, term contracts, and continuing contracts. Probationary contracts can be ended at the end of probationary contract period by just school district voting that it’s not in best interest to continue it
  • Hickman – Is there a shortage?
    • In 2 areas we do sometimes have a shortage, the panhandle and El Paso, we just don’t get a whole lot of people from those areas
  • Bell-Metereau – What is the view of where this would be a remedy to this problem?
    • First change it to not have state board take action against a license, could potentially increase number of people who are able to be independent hearing examiners, we have often have a lot in Austin who want to be independent hearing examiners but not that many in the pan handle


Item 3: Open-Enrollment Charter School Generation 29 Application Updates

Marian Schutte, Executive Director of Authorizing for TEA

  • Goals for application process are to design and execute charter application process that authorizes high quality charter schools
  • Start each year with gathering feedback on previous year
  • Sought feedback from applicants and external reviewers for their recommendations on how to make things clearer, changes and modifications that need to be made
  • Reached out to all-state board of education members and stakeholders, Texas Public Charter Schools Association, Texas Association of School Boards, Texas Association of School Administrators, National Association of Charter School Authorizers
  • Past application cycle was first time setting a standard timeline
  • Gen 29 timeline will be launched in mid-July, hold mandatory information sessions in July and August, offer optional additional supports through the fall (August – October), applications due November 3, review applications to ensure complete (completeness remedy window), evaluate
  • External review happens from January to April
  • Internal review happens once its known which applicants will make it past external review threshold
  • Capacity interviews held in early May
  • Streamlined criteria and questions, removing redundant questions to get narrow responses
  • Adding additional questions related to evidence of TEKS alignment, why instructional material has been chosen
  • Modifying questions about past performance, trying to get at understanding and more information about data being submitted
  • External and internal alignment, new RFQ process for external reviewers
  • Going to build performance tasks for external reviewers into RFQ process
  • Making tweaks to multistep internal review process, to make sure in line with charter school requirements
  • Working through comment submission formats
  • Streamlining instructions to make sure applicants know what is expected of them and lessen confusion
  • Continuing support for applicants, offer calls for those who have not had external review, hold calls with interested applicants to help understand process
  • Put greater focus on common trouble areas and expectations from the agency
  • Meetings for applicant teams at each stage so they understand the next stage and what’s expected
  • Year zero guidance, once applicant has been approved, pre-opening checklist with requirements that have to be met through year zero in order to be able to launch and establish school in fall
  • Monthly support calls with operators
  • Revised first year visits in September and October, bring team from agency to visit and do classroom visits, walk through of building, meet with school leadership team, parents, teachers
  • July 21 kickoff, November 3 applicants due
  • Francis – What role does your department play in Year Zero?
    • Their responsibility to do the work. All of the schools that have executed contract with have a team. They begin hiring staff and working through that. Actually, looking at startup plans put in application. Its kind of a hybrid approach, making sure they have connections and access to people withing the company
  • Francis – Is it your experience that would say that team stay on to help launch the school?
    • It varies by incubation program. Some applicant groups work with support groups. Depended on what program they are working with
  • Childs – When someone has an idea of a charter? What type of guidance could we give them?
    • We take calls from folks on a spectrum from folks who have an idea to those who are interest, we direct them to the criteria of the application, then recommend they come to info sessions and participate in that even if they are not planning to apply for that year. Looking to create more opportunities for people to learn about requirements and what it looks like
  • Bell-Metereau – The application process seems to take a lot of time for the boards time, do you have a sense of the percent of time TEA is devoted to issues to charters?
    • For my team, the Division of Authorizing, it’s about 90%, except for virtual education team, for other parts of the agency, I can’t speak to that
  • Francis – Do applicants get a chance for modification?
    • The only time that is allowed during the period of completeness check, it’s not a time to make edits, more so to add forgotten content to application


Item 4: Discussion of Ongoing State Board for Educator Certification Activities

Emily Garcia, Department of Educator Preparation Certification and Enforcement for TEA

  • Action items in April include routine rule review of adoption of Chapters 232 and 249
  • Adoption of final round of educator preparation program continuing approval reviews for last academic year
  • Approval of one new educator preparation program
  • Board discussed requirements for educator preparation programs, teacher residency certificate, and adoption of effective preparation framework
  • Discussed items related to pursuit of For Texas-by-Texas teacher performance assessment
  • Hickman – On the Texas Specific, does SPEC do first reading second reading, they haven’t gotten to discussion on that?
    • Correct, we’re having another discussion, often our items take multiple discussion
  • Hickman – Earliest first reading would happen in September?
    • Correct
  • Francis – Could you remind what rule change SPEC considering for 228 that would need SBOE action?
    • Going to add structure to chapter that will make more user friendly for stakeholders, that is at the discussion stage, looking at including teacher residency certificate pathway, doing structural changes to improve readability and usability of chapter, doing some low-lift improvements to requirements for educator preparation
  • Hickman – Can you explain teacher residency certificate?
    • Board is considering taking action to add pathway that is a residency certificate, aspiring teachers who choose to do year long residency route/year long residency experience prior to being standard certified would have that reflected on standard certification, residents are second adult in classroom serving under a certified teacher, different from teacher aid
  • Francis – Do you have a residency pathway?
    • There are educator preparation programs that choose residency route, but it leads to a standard certificate. What the board is considering at this time is having separate certificate, candidates who choose that route have different certificate that indicates that level of preparation