The State Board of Education met during September to take up a full agenda. This report covers only remarks and questions during Commissioner Mike Morath’s comments.

This report is intended to give you an overview and highlights of the discussions on the various topics the committee took up. It is not a verbatim transcript of the hearing but is based upon what was audible or understandable to the observer and the desire to get details out as quickly as possible with few errors or omissions.


Commissioner Morath Comments

Instructional materials portal

  • As the ad hoc committee recommends the rules be tweaked to require a majority vote of SBOE, rulemaking will be re-opened to make this change

Reading Academies

  • Currently – intensive year-long professional development series
    • 1,824 participants with 5 reading academies
    • Initial feedback – majority of participants were satisfied with their experience
    • Dramatic increases between pre- and post-test results by the end of teachers experience
  • Going forward
    • Challenges when scaling current reading academies
    • 121k teachers and principals must attend Reading Academies
    • Will need to make adjustments to current delivery model
    • Will create a bifurcated pathway, a blended model that will be competency based to allow some sub-set to test out of reading academies and another set to take a “customized” set of material from reading academies
    • Will let district themselves as well as ESCs, etc can become service providers of reading academies but TEA will provide curriculum and sequence to implement
    • Current estimates on pricing-
      • Blended model btw $300-500
      • Comprehensive model $3,000-$6,000 if a district is not doing it themselves
    • Recommends watching HB 3 in 30 video on this topic that came out yesterday

HB 3 Rulemaking Schedule for SBEC and SBOE was shared

2018 vs 2019 District Comparison on accountability – more A and B districts

  • 60% of rating for district is based on 12th graders
  • 40% is rest of kids in district
  • Campus ratings different – not as dramatic in growth
  • Biggest growth happening in CCMR space
  • Committed to 5 year window where measures are largely the same, notes it’s not precisely true for example TELPAS change, new CCMR indicators for only industry credentials
  • There may be minor changes as they move along
  • There may need to be more significant changes to this system but trying to be disciplined to only do those once every 5 years
  • “Student poverty is not a strong factor in how a campus was rated” – looks at system to make sure it is fair, reviews the domains

Reviewed – data available for community, pointed out various tools including analysis tool

Reviewed TEKS Guide webpages

Question and Answer

  • Cortez – wants to know what will be done for renewable energy in CTE or stand-alone strands
    • Will get back to him, there is a school in West Texas that has pioneered a drone pilot credential to monitor windmills
  • Cortez – HB 3 had funding to cover raises but some teachers are still waiting for that, what is being done as an agency to make sure districts are doing what they are supposed to?
    • Provision that requires all districts to report to legislature what they have done on raises
    • In process of building survey to facilitate that detail and it should hit around November and that information will be given to the legislature
    • ISDs have entire school year to do this, need to give a 1/3 of new money for raises so some districts have staggered raises, others have not yet done it as they waited for budget clarity
  • Cortez – lowest scoring schools are in high poverty areas, what is agency going to do to help outside of going in and taking them over
    • Huge technical assistance and supportive work
    • Diagnostic framework for districts to identify most critical areas of needs
    • Alief ISD has been a helpful thought partner in building resources out
    • Use federal funds to provide dedicated extra surge resources for districts to execute district improvement plans
  • Perez-Diaz – Asked about alignment discussion and TEKS website
    • Staff – Math will go up quickly
    • Staff – Will wait on science until SBOE has completed revision
    • Staff – Plan to align existing resources to ensure they are appropriate
  • Perez-Diaz – School progress domain has two portions, if exam is taken in one language but takes it in a different language the following year but there is not credit for growth?
    • Only half point of growth if maintains even if taking it in a different language
    • Growth looked at longitudinally two different ways
    • Can share chart they have, will confirm with team if that is true even on language switch
  • Perez-Diaz – CCMR, there is a lot of emphasis on CCMR but concern on how calculation is being assessed for military readiness. No standard form or process in place for military readiness, what is being done to address this?
    • There are several self-reported credentials, is an administrative burden and also allows for “squishiness”
    • Believes this spring they can get details directly from defense department
    • Will start working with industry credentials to get direct results
    • Will also have an investigative process on data being entered
    • Perez-Diaz – would like this detail when it is available
  • Hardy – where are we on HB 3906 advisory committee
    • Member will be announced this month for all committees
    • Working to stand up concept of “baby STARR”, smaller chunks of test as option for district
    • Support more districts doing online assessments
    • R&D process – to see about TEA building more formative assessments and at this point is a R&D concept, need to determine how that impacts local ability to determine scope and sequence
    • Need to build more non-multiple choice on test
    • Hardy – would that committee be in the position to determine the reading level of the tests?
    • Have a study on the reading level, through a university but will be asking committees to give feedback on process where content is at grade level and reading is below
  • Robinson – can you require places to use best practices
    • Sensitive of local control, there is an improvement planning process set out in statute that they support
  • Ellis – more details on STAAR study
    • Study has to look at 2019 results, ran into internal logistics that delayed traditional release but have been released on Texas but will be completely released in next 30 days
    • UT is doing the study
  • Allen – Asked by people if they should run for the board, when can we anticipate hearing about HISD and more on process
    • Regardless of what happens, encourage people to run for office
    • Even if I create a Board of Managers, they try to get out of there as quickly as possible
    • Have a process set up and will get him those details and timeline