Topic: Accountability System

San Antonio union files lawsuit to stop charter takeover, amidst more pushback against controversial accountability law

The pushback against school district partnerships with charter school chains continues after the San Antonio Alliance of Teachers and Support Personnel--our local union for San Antonio ISD--filed a lawsuit Friday to stop the district’s contract with a charter company to run a local elementary school. “School superintendents and school boards are not above the law, which is designed to protect...

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Financial firms drop charter school clients to support districts

Public school districts have gained allies in their fight against charter school expansion in the form of public finance firms that recently dropped their charter school clients. A report from The Bond Buyer​​ notes that Hilltop Securities—​a firm that serves a large number of school districts (including Houston ISD) in financial advisory, asset management, and underwriting—recently stopped representing nine charter schools to support its...

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Under state pressure, six districts propose outside partnerships for struggling campuses

The Texas Education Agency announced today that six school districts have proposed outside partnerships to operate struggling campuses, under a 2017 law that encourages this type of contracting out with a two-year exemption from state sanctions plus increased funding for an affected campus. The law (SB 1882) has been used to push districts into such relationships with charter operators, but...

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Houston ISD charterization plan halted as parents, educators raise questions

Under pressure from the Texas Education Agency to contract out struggling campuses to a charter-school operator, Houston ISD trustees nonetheless have decided not to proceed with a proposed charter contract—after hearing from parents and educators who question whether the forced charterization would benefit the children affected. Houston Federation of Teachers President Zeph Capo said many questions and concerns have been...

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House Public Education Committee meets April 18 on school finance, A-F accountability

Needs for school funding and the state’s venture into an A-F accountability labeling system will feature prominently on the agenda of the state House Public Education Committee slated for 1 p.m. on April 18. The finance portion of the hearing will cover some of the same ground addressed by the current Commission on Public School Finance. Last year the House...

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High-stakes testing resumes amid controversies

As a week of standardized state testing begins for Texas students, the stakes are higher than ever and controversy over the use and abuse of testing is intensifying. This year, under legislation passed in 2015, the state not only could compel closure of campuses given low performance ratings based on test results for multiple years—it also could take over the...

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Draft A-F accountability rules do little to allay concerns

 The 2015 legislature narrowly passed a bill providing for simplistic A-F ratings for schools, but the A-F system will not be implemented until later this year for school districts and not until 2019 for individual campuses. That gives the 2019 legislature a chance to reconsider and undo the A-F mandate, as other states disillusioned with this scheme have done, before...

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House Public Education Committee sets accountability hearing

Previously we reported that the Senate Education Committee would meet next Monday, November 6, in Houston for a hearing to review the crisis response of the Texas Education Agency to Hurricane Harvey and to gauge whether changes in state law are called for to make TEA’s response in such crises more effective. Now we can report that the House Public...

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