SXSWedu Policy Forum

  • -
  • 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
    Panels at various times. Check for details.
  • Hilton Austin Downtown
    500 E 4th Street, Austin, TX 78701 (map)

Policymakers play a critical role in the daily pursuit of improved teaching and learning. Join Tribune staff for SXSWedu's Policy Forum, produced in partnership with The Texas Tribune, Monday and Tuesday, March 4-5, 2013 at the Hilton Austin Downtown during the 2013 SXSWedu Conference & Festival.

** A SXSWedu badge is required to attend - register here. **

Monday, March 4

1:30 PM: Higher and K-12 Education in the 83rd Legislature
Education leaders in the House and Senate dissect the major policy battles of the ongoing legislative session. Panel moderated by Jim Henson, Texas Politics Project.

3 PM: School Safety: The Great Debate
Amid a flurry of post-Sandy Hook school safety measures at the Legislature, many school districts are reevaluating their security policies at the local level, including whether to allow their employees to carry concealed handguns. What options do districts have to keep students safe—and what options should they have? Panel moderated by Morgan Smith, The Texas Tribune.

4:30 PM: Education Chief Confidential
Past Secretary of Education Rod Paige and past Texas Commissioner of Education Jim Nelson share their thoughts on state and federal education policy from No Child Left Behind to STAAR. Panel moderated by Abby Rapoport, The American Prospect.

Tuesday, March 5

9 AM: Finding & Keeping Good Teachers
The quality of the teacher in a classroom is a better predictor of student success than class size, income level, or past performance. So what do districts—and the state—need to do to identify and keep the best educators in the profession? Panel moderated by Ben Philpott, The Texas Tribune/KUT.

10:30 AM: From High School to College and Career
The short answer to whether most Texas students leave public schools prepared for college? No. Less than one in two meet the state’s “college readiness” standards in math and verbal skills. Remediation rates once students reach higher education paint an equally dire picture. But should college be a goal for everyone? And do students need more options to pursue careers instead of college after high school? Panel moderated by Morgan Smith, The Texas Tribune.

12 PM: Navigating Financial Aid
With concerns about student debt and the price of college on the rise, the state’s leading financial aid experts discuss what students, institutions, and lawmakers can do to keep college affordable. Panel moderated by Reeve Hamilton, The Texas Tribune.

1: 30 PM: Can You Teach an Old College New Tricks?
Higher education is in a period of dramatic disruption and innovation. How can these traditional institutions reshape themselves for the 21st century? Panel moderated by Reeve Hamilton, The Texas Tribune.

3 PM: College vs UnCollege: Are Degrees Worth It?
In the Information Age, where knowledge has become ubiquitously accessible and informal education courses and certificates have blossomed, do formal college degrees still offer enough value to make their costs worthwhile? Does traditional higher education make sense in our innovation economy? This session will feature a lively debate on the benefits and limitations of college degrees today from two leading Gen Y education entrepreneurs on opposite sides of the playing field. Panel moderated by Reeve Hamilton, The Texas Tribune.

** A SXSWedu badge is required to attend - register here. **

Disclosure: though donors and corporate sponsors underwrite our events, they play no role in determining the content, panelists or line of questioning.