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Teach the Vote’s Week in Review: June 7, 2024

Teach the Vote
Teach the Vote

Date Posted: 6/07/2024

The ATPE Governmental Relations team recaps the past week’s education news, legislative and election updates, and regulatory developments.

OER MATERIALS: The Texas Education Agency released its first open education resource (OER) materials May 29 as part of an ongoing effort to implement legislative requirements from the 88th legislative session. Currently, only ELA K-5, mathematics K-12, and Spanish Language Arts and Reading K-5 are available to the public. The materials, which have been piloted in select districts throughout the state, are now available for public comment. ATPE Lobbyist Tricia Cave was interviewed on KXAN News Austin’s “State of Texas” program. You can watch that piece here; scroll down to the headline “Texas releases new, state-owned textbooks aimed to improve student outcomes.” Cave also wrote a blog post about the OER materials release.

VOUCHERS: The Washington Post published an article Monday on the rapid expansion of voucher programs across the country, and it’s well worth a read. The article outlines how voucher programs drain state public education budgets, as well as explores the number of students who are using voucher dollars to attend private schools associated with various religions.

STAAR EOC RESULTS: TEA released 2024 STAAR end-of-course (EOC) exam results Friday showing consistent percentages of students meeting grade level in Algebra I, Biology, and English I, with a 4% increase in English II. The percentage of Emergent Bilingual students meeting grade level increased across all assessments. In U.S. History, 2% fewer students hit the “meets” and “masters” levels than in 2023. The overall percentage of students who passed U.S. History remains the same at 95%.  It is important to note that students who meet the “approaches” standard have also passed the EOC exams. Those students were left out of the data touted by Commissioner Mike Morath in the TEA press release. Also important to note, in the post-pandemic era, a number of changes have been made to the STAAR exams, including implementation of new question types, moving the test online, and the use of AI grading. Aggregate student data is available on the Texas Assessment Research Portal. STAAR results for grades 3–8 will be released June 14.

ATPE SUMMIT: Midnight Friday, June 7, is the deadline for ATPE local unit and region presidents to certify delegates for the annual ATPE House of Delegates (HOD) Meeting, which will take place July 9 during the 2024 ATPE Summit. Delegates are responsible for annual approval of the member-written ATPE Legislative Program, which guides ATPE Governmental Relations in all of its advocacy efforts. The ability to say that a wide range of educators from Texas wrote and voted on the legislative program is a key talking point for ATPE lobbyists as they advocate for member priorities. Don’t miss your chance to have a voice. If you’re reading this and the date is still June 7, contact your president immediately to let them know you would like to serve as a voting delegate. (New this year: All summit attendees must individually register themselves.) Learn more at atpesummit.org


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