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 statewide curriculum;
- administers the statewide assessment program;
- administers a data collection system on public school students, staff and finances;
- rates school districts under the statewide accountability system;
- operates research and information programs;
- monitors for compliance with federal guidelines; and
- serves as a fiscal agent for the distribution of state and federal funds.
The Handbook of Texas Online states that in 1990, "TEA reorganized to make it more client-centered and field-based, emphasizing communication between local school districts and TEA through the newly established Field Service Unit and strengthening accountability and coordination with the state's twenty regional education services. In 1987 the legislature established the Legislative Education Board to oversee the implementation of state-mandated education reforms and to set public education policy, which TEA and the State Board of Education implement."