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Florida announces end to standardized testing; will Texas follow?

Gov. Abott with a smirk and Gov. DeSantis looking bewildered

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has announced the end of standardized testing in his state. Gov. Greg Abbott usually copies DeSantis' every move, so we want to voice our support for the governor to add legislation to this third special session's agenda that cancels STAAR permanently. If we want to copy all the extremist homework of Florida and other states on mask mandates,...

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Texas Earns an F for Education Spending—No Wonder the Public Says No to Cuts

The 2011 Quality Counts survey, from the research center associated with Education Week magazine, grades states on the caliber of their commitment to educational quality. The Texas report card this year is enough to hurt a Texan’s pride. Overall, by the charitable estimate of the Education Week researchers, Texas scores...

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Some Key Points in the Debate on Class-Size Caps

If class size in public schools isn't important, “then why does every private school in America brag on 'we have a small class size?’” That question posed by former Texas Gov. Mark White leads off one of the best articles we’ve seen lately regarding the looming attack in the state...

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Initial State Revenue, Budget Numbers Coming Next Week

Next Monday, on the eve of the new state legislative session, Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts Susan Combs will unveil her official estimate of how much revenue lawmakers can count on for the upcoming 2012-2013 budget. It’s only an estimate, but it’s binding on lawmakers unless and until the comptroller...

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Stopgap Federal Education Aid

Right before the holiday break the U.S. Senate and House passed a stopgap bill to continue federal education funding until March 4 without increases above levels from the previous fiscal year. The Congress that gets sworn in tomorrow will make the final decisions on federal funding for the balance of...

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Federal “Highly Qualified” Definition Gets Reprieve

The same bill making the short-term extension of federal education aid also gave a new lease on life to a contested federal definition of what constitutes a “highly qualified” teacher. The federal No Child Left Behind Act applies the “highly qualified” requirement to school districts that get federal aid. The...

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Take Texas AFT’s Survey on Teacher Evaluation

Texas AFT’s Committee on Quality Educational Standards in Teaching (QuEST) has come up with a new survey for teachers on the evaluation systems currently in effect in their districts and possible alternatives. Many members already have responded to the survey, initially announced in the Hotline and posted online in mid-December....

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Holiday Hotline

The regular daily Hotline will take a holiday break from December 17 through January 3, resuming on January 4, 2011. As always, special editions may appear in the meanwhile as circumstances dictate.

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One Last Try for the DREAM Act

A key bill left for dead last week has undergone a resurrection, thanks to quick action by grass-roots advocates and their allies in Congress. The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the DREAM Act again as a brand-new bill—one that would gives thousands of immigrant children access to the higher...

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