Tribpedia: Texas Education Agency

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) oversees primary and secondary public education for the state, including setting accountability standards. The Commissioner of Education, Michael L. Williams, manages the TEA, and the agency works in conjunction with the State Board of Education (SBOE) in setting curriculum standards.

According to its website, the TEA:

  • manages the textbook adoption process;
  • oversees development of the ...

On June 24, 2014, volunteers gather at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in McAllen, where the Rio Grande Valley Catholic Charities have a makeshift shelter to help handle the surge of immigrants who have crossed into the U.S. in recent weeks.
On June 24, 2014, volunteers gather at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in McAllen, where the Rio Grande Valley Catholic Charities have a makeshift shelter to help handle the surge of immigrants who have crossed into the U.S. in recent weeks.

With Uncertainty, Schools Prepare for New Arrivals

With many of the unaccompanied minors fleeing violence in Central America remaining in Texas, public school administrators face the challenge of providing an education for them when schools open later this month. But uncertainty about how many youths they will enroll is complicating efforts to prepare for their arrival.

Keith Plantier lectures in a "Wind Safety" course at Texas State Technical College in Sweetwater, Texas, on July, 22, 2013. The college is placing more of an emphasis on courses that will help their students find employment in the growing number of oilfields and wind farms in West Texas.
Keith Plantier lectures in a "Wind Safety" course at Texas State Technical College in Sweetwater, Texas, on July, 22, 2013. The college is placing more of an emphasis on courses that will help their students find employment in the growing number of oilfields and wind farms in West Texas.

TSTC Launches Center for Employability Outcomes

With the launch of a new initiative on Monday, the Texas State Technical College System could help revolutionize how colleges align their curriculum with workforce demands and help their students match up better with employers’ needs.

 

Texas Commissioner of Education Michael Williams answers a question at TribLive on Jan. 10, 2013.
Texas Commissioner of Education Michael Williams answers a question at TribLive on Jan. 10, 2013.

Williams Discusses Decision to Approve Charter

UPDATED: Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams told State Board of Education members Wednesday that when he approved an Arizona-based charter school's expansion into the Dallas area, he was following the spirit of a 2013 law intended to encourage high-quality charter operators to come to the state. 

A study released by Sam Houston State University in October 2013 that was commissioned by the Texas State Teachers Association showed a marked increase in teachers reporting that they had taken second jobs during the school year to make ends meet.
A study released by Sam Houston State University in October 2013 that was commissioned by the Texas State Teachers Association showed a marked increase in teachers reporting that they had taken second jobs during the school year to make ends meet.

As Teacher Pay Lags, Attrition and Class Size Grow

Stacked up against other states, Texas public schools could win the best-bang-for-your-buck competition. The state spends less than most others, and its students perform better than many. But the commitment to fiscal restraint has come with its own burdens for the teachers responsible for educating the state’s future workforce.

Texas' improvement on national academic measures has begun to stall in recent years. In 2013, for the first time in 15 years, math and reading scores went down or stayed the same for black and Hispanic students in both fourth and eighth grades. The scores also went down for Anglo students in some areas.
Texas' improvement on national academic measures has begun to stall in recent years. In 2013, for the first time in 15 years, math and reading scores went down or stayed the same for black and Hispanic students in both fourth and eighth grades. The scores also went down for Anglo students in some areas.

Academic Gains Slowing; No Consensus on Why

For years, Texas policymakers have pushed for increasingly advanced science and math course requirements, along with standardized test-driven accountability, to improve academic performance at public schools. And over the last decade, students have made steady progress on a number of academic measures. But that improvement has begun to stall.

Former TEA Commissioner Robert Scott speaks at Save our School's rally at Texas Capitol on February 23rd, 2013
Former TEA Commissioner Robert Scott speaks at Save our School's rally at Texas Capitol on February 23rd, 2013

Texas Starts to Have Company in Position on Common Core

State legislatures are scrambling to renounce Common Core standards as a grassroots movement builds against them. But their most vocal and earliest opponent was Texas. Back in 2009, state leaders said the national curriculum standards could lead to a federal takeover of education policy. 

Parents look over books and ask questions about curriculum during a parent information session for the new Great Hearts Monte Vista Charter School to open in San Antonio at Temple Beth-El, October 29, 2013.
Parents look over books and ask questions about curriculum during a parent information session for the new Great Hearts Monte Vista Charter School to open in San Antonio at Temple Beth-El, October 29, 2013.

TEA Chief Circumvents State Board Charter School Veto

Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams has effectively overruled a vote by the State Board of Education to deny an Arizona-based charter school's expansion into the Dallas area.

A public education rally at the Capitol on March 11, 2013, sponsored by the Texas chapter of the American Federation of Teachers.
A public education rally at the Capitol on March 11, 2013, sponsored by the Texas chapter of the American Federation of Teachers.

Houston Teachers Sue Over Student Test-Based Evaluation

Seven teachers, backed by the Houston branch of the American Federation of Teachers, are suing the Houston school district over a new approach tying standardized test results to pay and employment decisions. 

 

A student works on math problems in Keith Marquez's summer school geometry class at McAllum High School in Austin, Texas, Jul. 31, 2013.
A student works on math problems in Keith Marquez's summer school geometry class at McAllum High School in Austin, Texas, Jul. 31, 2013.

New Law Limits Standardized Tests, but Not Prep Work

House Bill 5, which reduced standardized testing in public high schools, also included a provision aimed at easing the pressure of high-stakes exams for students in lower grades. But a year later, the provision that was written to curb the time educators spent preparing students for standardized tests instead of teaching may not have had the intended effect.

 

 

 

Attorney General Greg Abbott promoting his pre-kindergarten education proposal on April 2, 2014, at the IDEA Carver Academy in San Antonio.
Attorney General Greg Abbott promoting his pre-kindergarten education proposal on April 2, 2014, at the IDEA Carver Academy in San Antonio.

Abbott Campaign: Pre-K Plan Does Not Mean More Tests

After questions were raised about language in a policy proposal that appears to call for the biannual testing of pre-kindergarten students, Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott’s campaign is clarifying his early education plan, saying he is not calling for such tests.

 

SBOE May Get Private Funds to See Out-of-State Charters

A proposal under consideration by the Texas State Board of Education would allow private foundations to pay for elected officials on the 15-member board to visit out-of-state charter schools whose applications they approve. Critics say private funds shouldn't pay for any part of a process used to evaluate whether charters should receive taxpayer money. 

Parc Smith, CEO of American YouthWorks, a dropout recovery charter school facing closure by the state, looks in a student locker.
Parc Smith, CEO of American YouthWorks, a dropout recovery charter school facing closure by the state, looks in a student locker.

Charter Serving High School Dropouts Fights Closure

As six charter schools face automatic closure under a new Texas law, the state is facing questions over the guidelines used to decide which schools to close — and whether the process unfairly handicaps schools that serve hard-to-reach students.

Students in Yvonne McDaniel's Reading English for Speakers of Other Languages, or ESOL, class participate in English-language exercises during summer school at McAllum High School in Austin, Texas, Jul. 31, 2013.
Students in Yvonne McDaniel's Reading English for Speakers of Other Languages, or ESOL, class participate in English-language exercises during summer school at McAllum High School in Austin, Texas, Jul. 31, 2013.

Texas Public School Students Lag Behind in Reading

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Texas public school students continue to lag behind the national average in reading scores, according to the National Assessment of Education Progress scores released Thursday.