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May 21: Senate Education Committee to Hear Two Accountability Bills, One Relating to IMA

05.18.2015 — The Senate Education Committee will meet at 9 a.m., Thursday, May 21, on three bills. (HB 1842 and HB 2811 were added to the agenda on Wednesday, May 20.)

HB 2804, as passed by the House:

While in committee, campus A-F ratings provisions from SB 6 were rolled into HB 2804. The bill makes student performance on STAAR account for 55 percent of the school's rating, but it differs from the Senate campus A-F rating bill in that it requires 45 percent of a school's A-F rating to be based on factors including community engagement, AP course enrollment, attendance, and dropout rates. HB 2804 would take effect with the 2017-18 school year, except that provisions requiring the commissioner to assign each district and campus a performance rating by August 15 each year would apply beginning with the 2015-16 school year.

Amendments adopted on the House floor:

  • require a report on how the new accountability system is working
  • grant credit for students completing AP courses, not just enrolling in them
  • require the commissioner to consult with a performance rating workgroup consisting of trustees, superintendents, principals, teachers, and parents before adopting rules to evaluate campuses under this legislation
  • provide that “C” and “acceptable performance” are considered acceptable ratings when referenced in law
  • mandate that only students continuously enrolled in a dropout recovery school for 90 or more days may be considered for accountability purposes
  • require consideration of the percentage of elementary students assigned for two consecutive years to a teacher with less than one year of experience or who is not appropriately certified for accountability purposes

Read HB 2804 as passed by the House.

HB 1842, as passed by the House:

  • would rename Education Code 39.107, “Campus Turnaround Plan, Board of Managers, Alternative Management, and Closure,” and extensively amend its provisions. After a campus has been identified as unacceptable for two consecutive years, the commissioner would be required to order the campus to prepare and submit a campus turnaround plan. The bill includes specifics on how a campus must prepare the plan, which would take effect not later than the school year following the third consecutive year that the campus has received an academically unacceptable performance rating. If a campus for which a plan has been ordered receives an academically acceptable rating for the school year following the order, the board could implement the plan, implement a modified version of the plan, or withdraw the plan. A district required to implement a plan could modify or withdraw the plan if the campus receives an academically acceptable rating for two consecutive years following implementation of the plan. The bill would address application of these provisions to an open-enrollment charter school.
    • would allow the commissioner to approve a campus turnaround plan only if the commissioner determines that the campus will satisfy all student performance standards under 39.054(e) not later than the second year the campus receives a performance rating following implementation of the plan. If the commissioner does not make this determination, the commissioner would order appointment of a board of managers to govern the district, alternative management of the campus, or closure of the campus. If a campus has an unacceptable rating for three consecutive years after it is ordered to submit a campus turnaround plan, the commissioner would be required to order either appointment of a board of managers to govern the district or closure of the campus.
    • would require a board of managers, during the period of appointment, to order the election of members of the board of trustees in accordance with applicable law. On the expiration of the appointment, the board of trustees would assume all powers and duties assigned to a board of trustees.
  • would amend Education Code 12.101(b-4) pertaining to the ability of certain charter holders to establish one or more new campuses under an existing charter.
  • add Education Code 11.0511, “Student Trustee for Certain Districts,” which would apply only to a district with its central administrative office in a county with a population over 2 million and student enrollment between 125,000 and 200,000, that includes a school under the campus turnaround plan. The board of such a district could adopt a resolution establishing a student trustee position as a nonvoting board member.

Read HB 1842 as passed by the House.

HB 2811 by Ken King, as passed by the House, would:
  • require the SBOE to review (as specified in the bill) the essential knowledge and skills of the foundation curriculum and narrow the number and scope of student expectations for each subject and grade level to require less time for a demonstration of mastery than the essential knowledge and skills adopted as of January 1, 2015. The SBOE would complete the review and revision by September 1, 2018.
  • permit the SBOE to issue only proclamations for instructional materials in which the total projected cost of the proclamation does not exceed 75 percent of the total amount used to fund the instructional materials allotment (IMA) for that biennium.
  • require the SBOE to consider the cost of all instructional materials and technology requirements for that biennium in determining the disbursement of money to the available school fund and the amount that will be used to fund the IMA.
  • change the IMA from an annual to a biennial allotment.
  • require the comptroller, in connection with installment transfers of funds from the general revenue fund to the Foundation School Fund, to permit TEA to make temporary transfers from the Foundation School Fund for payment of the IMA. These temporary transfers could impact the timing of transferring installments and the amount.
  • The bill would repeal provisions related to use of instructional materials that are not on the list and changes in subscription-based or electronic instructional materials.

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