A Commitment To Our Children. A Commitment To Our Future.
“During the 85th Legislative Session, we must demonstrate a steadfast commitment to the children of Texas and the future of our state by enacting policies that truly improve our schools and bring real results into every classroom,” said Courtney Boswell, Executive Director of Texas Aspires.
Priorities for the 85th Legislature:
Restore an exit-level assessment for high school students.+-
The foundation of a strong education system prepares students for the rigors of a variety of post-secondary environments, from technical schools to community colleges to the military to four-year universities. Current required end-of-course (EOC) exams do not provide the exit-level assessment data necessary to ensure that all students are on track to succeed in a post-secondary path that aligns with their skills and interests. Texas has an exam – The Texas Success Initiative Assessment – that is based on Texas standards, is written for Texas students, and measures students’ preparedness for post-secondary success.
Create a teacher quality process for districts to highlight strategies for recruiting, developing, and retaining effective educators.+-
Teachers are the lifeblood of our schools, teaching academic concepts and cultivating the intellectual curiosity of our children, tomorrow’s leaders and innovators. By focusing on the teacher pipeline, districts can strengthen their teaching force and ensure that every classroom is led by a high-quality teacher. Strategic human capital development focuses on all aspects of the teacher pipeline, from recruiting high-quality candidates to developing teachers to retaining effective educators.
Facilitate statewide conditions that encourage and incentivize district-charter partnerships.+-
In communities throughout Texas, districts and charter schools operate in isolation. Both sectors serve Texas public school students, and the state must foster a climate where districts and charters are partners, working together to benefit all of the students they serve. These partnerships focus on collaboration between charter schools and traditional public school.
Implement and improve the A-F campus and district rating system.+-
Accountability is crucial to ensuring that the needs of all students are being met. Under the current pass/fail system of rating schools, 93.7% of campuses received “passing” grades, yet only a third of students across the state are identified as “proficient” in math and reading. A-F ratings provide transparency and a greater level of information for students, parents, teachers, district leaders, and community members. These ratings highlight areas of achievement and identify areas where improvement is needed. The rating system relies on a holistic set of factors that include achievement data, measures of post-secondary readiness, and community engagement.
Provide facilities funding for charter schools.+-
Opportunities are limited for charter schools in the state of Texas. They receive no funding for facilities, which limits their growth. Any step to provide financial support for charter school facilities, even incremental, is a step forward for our state’s charter schools.
Increase post-secondary readiness and defend rigorous standards, specifically supporting 60x30TX.+-
In an increasingly competitive and global economy, we must be ardent and aggressive in our efforts to restore high expectations for all students and ensure they can succeed in post-secondary environments. Currently, only 40 percent of 25-34 year olds in Texas have a workforce certificate, two-year degree, or higher. The goal of 60x30TX: Texas Higher Education Strategic Plan for 2015-2030 is for at least 60% of Texans ages 25-34 to possess a certificate or degree by 2030. To reach this goal, we must create a cohesive and purposeful system of education that begins with early learning, continues in K-12 classrooms, and ultimately prepares students for success in higher education, the workforce, or military service.