Texas House Public Education Committee Chairman Dan Huberty's House Bill 22 is headed to the Texas Senate after passing its final reading on Thursday.
The bill would delay implementation of the state's new A-F district and campus rating system to August 2019, reduce the number of domains of achievement indicators for the system from five to three, eliminate the cumulative A-F grade for schools and districts, require 'what if' performance ratings to be issued in 2017 and 2018, reduce the weight of STAAR from 55 percent to 50 percent and change the definition of a "D" rating to be "in need of improvement."
According to the Texas Association of School Administrators, the following amendments, all acceptable to the bill author, were adopted:
Amendment 1 by Bernal "makes sure all students are treated the same way" by striking the provision that would have given greater weight to the performance of a student who has been continuously enrolled in the district or campus.
Amendment 2 by Holland allows a campus or district to "get credit" under the student achievement domain for offering a program in which a student may earn an associate degree. The amendment also ensures that the commissioner’s review of a district or campus can’t be negatively affected if that district or campus doesn’t offer a program through which a student may complete an associate degree.
Amendment 3 by Hinojosa adds the percentage of students who succesfully complete an OnRamps dual-credit course to the student achivement domain.
Amendment 4 by Ken King corrects a clerical error on implementation dates.
Amendment 5 by Bohac adds positive character training to the school climate domain.
Amendment 6 by Stickland would give credit to districts for efforts to increase teacher retention, including mentoring programs and professional development programs.
Amendment 7 by Wilson clarifies language for an indicator in the school climate domain related to measuring participation in health and wellness programs.
Amendment 8 by Biedermann requires the third-party administration of a teacher engagement survey as part of the school climate survey.
Amendment 9 by Deshotel requires disaggregation of student performance data by race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and limited English proficiency.
Amendment 10 by Bailes requires the commissioner to provide each district with a document in a simple, accessible format that is easily distributed to parents and explains the accountability perfomance measures, methods, and procedures that will be applied for that school year in assigning performance ratings for schools and districts.
Amendment 11 by Villalba requires the commissioner to revoke the charter of an open-enrollment charter school that has been assigned an unacceptable performance rating for the school progress domain for the three preceding years. It also allows the commissioner to terminate a district's District of Innovation designation if the district receives an unacceptable performance rating for the school progress domain for two consecutive school years (or an unacceptable rating in that domain for one year and unacceptable financial accountability rating in the other year).
(Amendment 12 by Biedermann was withdrawn.)
Amendment 13 by VanDeaver requires the commissioner, in collaboration with interested stakeholders, to develop standardized language for each domain that does not exceed 250 words and that clearly describes the annual status of a district and campus relating to district and campus performance on the indicators used for that domain to determine the letter performance rating. assigned to a district and campus.
Amendment 14 by Shine requires the commissioner to determine the feasibility of adopting an indicator that assesses the progress of students enrolled in a school district's special education program.
Amendment 15 by Blanco requires districts and charters with high dropout rates to design a dropout recovery plan that includes CTE courses or technology applications courses that lead to industry or career certification and more.
Amendment 16 by Wilson requires the commissioner to ensure that the method used to evaluate performance for A-F ratings is implemented in a manner that provides the mathematical possibility that all districts and campuses receive an A rating.
(Amendment 17 by Isaac would remove student STAAR results from consideration related to teacher evaluation if districts use another instrument to include student performance in teacher evaluation. This amendment was withdrawn but expected to be brought back when the bill is heard on third reading.)
Amendment 18 by Thompson adds to the student achievement domain certain indicators related to high-achieving students; e.g., students who have received credit by exam, been promoted to higher grade levels, earned a diploma within three years, have performed satisfactorily on pre-IB exams. The amendment also adds credit in the first domain for students who participate in a UIL A+ Academic event.