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Senate Education Committee to Consider SB 1302 to Reduce State Standardized Testing to Federal Minimum, Other Bills on April 28

04.27.2015 — The Senate Education Committee will meet at 9 a.m., Tuesday, April 28, on the following bills:

  • SB 161 by Jose Rodríguez increases the weight for bilingual or ESL in the FSP from 0.10 to 0.25.

  • SB 215 by Donna Campbell, et al. would transfer driver and traffic safety education from TEA to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. The bill would also change the amounts of certain fees.

  • SB 507 by Eddie Lucio would require a school district or open-enrollment charter school, in order to promote student safety on request of a parent, trustee, or staff member, to provide video equipment to each school in which a student receiving special education services in a self-contained classroom is enrolled. Cameras would be placed in self-contained classrooms in which the only students in regular attendance are or would be eligible to take an alternative assessment instrument or are nonverbal or have a limited ability to communicate. Before placing a camera, the school would be required to provide written notice to parents of students in the classroom. A district or charter school could not place a camera in the classroom of a student whose parent objects in writing by the 30th day after the district or charter school sends notice. Video would be retained for at least one year after it was recorded. These provisions would not waive immunity from liability or create liability. A district or charter school could not allow regular or continual monitoring of video or use video for teacher evaluation or any purpose other than the promotion of safety of students receiving special education services in a self-contained classroom. A video of a student made under these provisions would be confidential and could not be released or viewed except under the circumstances specified in the bill.

  • SB 996 by Van Taylor would require a school district or open-enrollment charter school to provide a parent or guardian written notice indicating whether any school employee is currently appointed a school marshal if the parent or guardian inquires in writing. The notice could not disclose confidential information. The bill would also make confidential all information, not just identifying information, about those who train for appointment as school marshals. SB 996 is identical to HB 370.

  • SB 1169 by Donna Campbell would require staff development provided by a school district to include two hours of in-service training annually in suicide prevention, using a best practice-based program recommended by the Department of State Health Services in coordination with TEA.

  • SB 1216 by Paul Bettencourt, et al. would abolish each county board of education, board of county school trustees, and office of county school superintendent in a county with a population of 3.3 million or more. All assets, liabilities, and contracts would be transferred to the county commissioners court in trust for the component school districts in the county. By September 1, 2016, the commissioners court would distribute the assets remaining after discharge of the liabilities. The component districts would collect and use any delinquent taxes in the manner provided by commissioner rule. The bill would repeal the law pertaining to the election of county school trustees.

  • SB 1302 by José Menéndez would eliminate from Education Code 39.023(a) the specific references to subjects in which and grade levels at which students are to be assessed, and replace the specifics with a general reference to the requirements of federal law.

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