The State Board of Education met on June 23 to approve the items on the consent agenda, embed OSHA training into some CTE courses, renew the state’s contract with the High School Equivalency contract provider, update the TEKS Review process, amend the no-contact order for schools seeking charter approval, approve new charter schools, and approve new innovative courses. A video archive of this meeting is available here.


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 2: Approval of the Consent Agenda

  • Brooks – Would like to pull item 4 from the consent agenda
  • Item 4 pulled from the consent agenda; remaining items approved
  • Chair Ellis – Item 4 will be taken up during Hickman’s committee presentation


Item 3: Proposed New Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Occupational Safety and Health in 19 TAC Chapter 127, Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Career Development and Career and Technical Education, Subchapter B, High School (Second Reading and Final Adoption)

  • Ellis – We had some concern that if we passed this course, it would not lead to an industry recognized card
  • Maynard – Motion to divide question to consider embedded and standalone course separately
  • Maynard – I’m not sure that there will be much of an appetite for students to take it
  • Francis – My understanding is that students are not going to be in a better position with the card they earn; going with the embedded is a better use of everyone’s time
  • Maynard – I move to amend the motion on B to remove the principles courses from the embedded program and replacing them with the higher level of those courses
  • Hickman – Is the idea that we catch as many sophomores as possible?
    • Maynard – That is correct
  • Brooks – Does this include our 8th graders?
    • Maynard – No; some may take principles classes in eighth grade but not level 1 courses
  • Francis – How does this affect teachers with the change?
    • I don’t know how it may impact specific teachers, I think it will be a more focused group of teachers
  • Francis – What are the options if we see a number of teachers who need to be trained
    • Teachers would not be required to get the training, but for those teachers who do get the training, those students would be able to get the OSHA 10 Card
  • Bell-Metereau – I don’t know about this idea of strongly encouraging schools to do something
    • We can talk to districts about how they can get there, and give them all the resources and information they need
  • Motion Carries; embedded OSHA courses pass
  • Ellis – if we wanted a standalone course we would approve the next item
  • Motion to approve standalone course fails (4-8)



Item 4: Discussion of Renewal of Texas Certificate of High School Equivalency Contract

(First Reading and Filing Authorization)

  • Kinsey – my current thought process is that we should do nothing to allow staff to work on an RFP so we can go to market and secure a vendor for a longer time period
    • What we would do is work on a draft RFP and a timeline, and you would authorize this at the next meeting
    • If you vote to extend the contract, we will do that. If you wait, we can talk about a timeline for looking at contracts with vendors
  • Francis – we don’t need to give away our positions right now, we have time to look at additional vendors
    • For clarification, there are only two vendors
  • Francis – have we tried to do this on our own
    • We do not have the resources to do that
  • Hickman – We have a good deal with favorable pricing, I would vote in favor of extending
  • Bell-Metereau – I agree with Hickman
  • Pickren – How much are we talking about?
    • We don’t pay anything, the person who takes the test pays
    • 29,974 students took the test last year
  • Pickren – if we vote to delay renewing, do we negate any terms of the contract?
    • No, you have until the contract ends
  • Pickren – delaying this vote does not renegotiate the terms of this contract?
    • That is correct
  • Hardy – There are no other viable companies and they have worked hard to make it work; I think the idea of putting out of RFP is a lot of wasted energy
  • Kinsey – Getting an RFP would allow us to sign a contract with a vendor for longer
  • Bell-Metereau – this could take up time and effort for our staff, and we won’t gain anything by putting this off
  • Kinsey – Could we get a worse deal with an RFP?
    • If you sent out an RFP and the offer was worse than your extension, we would advise you to take the extension
  • Brooks – I don’t think it is unreasonable for the pay increase that they asked for a 3-year contract
  • Francis – I don’t think we should make a decision until we have more complete information
  • Francis – Moves to postpone to next meeting
  • Brooks – If we wait till the next meeting, will possibly have a problem issuing an RFP
    • Your ability to extend the contract will not be impacted by your solicitation
  • Francis – Could we solicitate a new offer and then have it take effect in 2027 at the conclusion of our extension
    • I would need to get back to you at a further meeting; I would need to check with the comptroller’s guidelines
  • Motion to Postpone fails (4-7)
  • Perez-Diaz – the wisest thing to do is move on
  • Motion to approve contract carries (8-4)


Item 5: Update on Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) Review

  • Francis – Will this be in place where the old flow chart is?
    • It will be the same page and we will be very clear with the labelling
  • Francis – Could you indicate that a document is new?
    • We usually try to label anything that is new
  • Francis – Can you put like a “call out” so it isn’t something just in the title
    • I think I know what you are talking about
  • Pickren – In number 5, how would a parent qualify when the TEA staff is identifying applicants
    • We generally look at any information they provide that show they have knowledge of the subject
    • We are looking to include as many people as possible
  • Motion to adopt carries


Item 6: Proposed Amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 100, Charters, Subchapter A, Open-Enrollment Charter Schools, §100.1, Selection Process (First Reading and Filing Authorization)

  • Motion to adopt carries


Item 7: Consideration of the Commissioner of Education’s Generation 28 Open -Enrollment Charter School Proposals

  • Ellis – Are some additional contingencies brought up on two of these; will have staff go over that when they get to the item
  • Vote of “taking no action” means that the charter school will continue on in the process
  • Motion for SBOE to take no action on Celebrate Dyslexia passes (13-1)
  • Recommends SBOE take no action on Heritage Classical Academy
    • Perez -Diaz – Against the passage of this charter; this is their fourth attempt with nine contingencies; 5 of which are related to the TEKS; would think they would be more prepared on this foundational piece
    • Bell-Metereau – Agree with Perez -Diaz; will be dealing with the consequences if they do not succeed
    • Davis – Echo concerns; believe they would be in violation of SB 3
    • Francis – Is no limit to the number of times a charter can apply to this process; have not heard significant reasons as to why this charter should not continue
    • Motion to call the question to vote on the motion (9-4)
  • Motion for SBOE to take no action on Heritage Classical Academy passes (8-6)
  • Motion for SBOE to veto NextGen Innovation Academy fails (5-9)
    • Ellis – Additional contingencies were brought for this
    • Francis – Voted previously to veto this charter; was concerned about curriculum, and feel reassured by new contingencies
    • Davis – Looks like all these contingencies are going to undo things we had concerns about; is no actual product for us to go back and look at
    • Ellis – Think you are right, but the contingencies state they will follow state and federal law
  • Motion for SBOE to take no action on NextGen Innovation Academy passes (8-6)
  • Motion for SBOE to veto Village Speech and Debate Academy passes (13-1)
  • Recommendation for SBOE to veto Up Excellence Academy
    • Ellis – Are additional contingencies for this one
    • Perez-Diaz – Have concerns about the development for social studies and science scope and sequence; why was this not included in the initial application?
    • Up Academy Representative – Were required to put scope and sequence for one grade level and subject; have a scope and sequence for both and will share with you
    • Perez-Diaz – Want to guarantee that additional contingencies on the back end that are imposed upon the school; concerned by related conversations by some of the members
    • Ellis – We do not have any ability to impose contingencies; are the Commissioner’s contingencies, he could theoretically add more
    • Perez-Diaz – Do not know why this campus is singled out in terms of a certain contingency
    • Hickman – Last one from NextGen had the same contingency
    • Pickren – Thanks to the Commissioner and the academy for their proposal
    • Bell-Metereau – Concerned specifically about teacher salaries for bilingual and special education teachers and alternative certification programs
    • Maynard – Discusses salary difference versus larger and smaller schools
    • Maynard – Were certain things in this application that gave me pause, but need to work with a sense of urgency for our students who need this; need to support this school/effort
    • Francis – Had concerns in curriculum and leadership for this charter; feel these concerns have been worked through
    • Kinsey – Was against this proposal initially; believe concerns have been addressed in additional contingencies
    • Brooks – Agree with Maynard
    • Davis – Have a lot of issues with what is being said; are already many A/B schools/choices in the 5th ward area; we cannot continuously dump schools in the area
    • Childs – There is a lot of pride in the 5th ward area; this is a small answer to the school to prison pipeline; are many application including this one that were not perfect
    • Pickren – Have heard there is not a need for this school, data does not show that
    • Motion to call the question (12-1)
  • Motion to veto Up Excellence Academy fails (4-9)
  • Motion to take no action on Up Excellence Academy passes (9-4)


Committee Presentations:

Committee of School Initiatives

Part 4 of Consent Agenda

  • Hickman – Moves that Jackie Branch serve a 2 -year term on the Boys Ranch ISD Board of Trustees
  • Brooks – I would like the board to consider the recommendation of a few other candidates; we are not getting the results that we should from this district
  • Maynard – Children are placed at Boys Ranch for a variety of reasons and many of them are playing catch up; sometimes in the interim those test results don’t look as shiny
  • Hickman – Are we allowed to appoint anyone we want to, or do we have to take recommendations?
    • TEA Staff – Because Boys Ranch is a special district, it does not receive an academic accountability rating
    • TEA Staff – The commander or CEO is only required to submit one nomination, if the board wanted more, I believe that would require amending your rules
  • Motion carries 8-1


Committee on Instruction

Item 8: Consideration of Innovative Courses

  • Committee recommends approving Multilingual Acculturation Studies Motion carries (10-0)
  • Young – It is my desire to clean up innovative courses and ensure that we don’t have redundancy
  • Young – Committee recommends to deny Navigating Excellence Motion carries (10-0)


Committee on School Finance

  • Maynard – Total value of PSF is $58 Billion
  • Maynard – We are searching for a new CEO for the PSF
  • Maynard – We are looking for ways to make our portfolio more Texas centered
  • Maynard – We are seeking to make a new proxy voting policy