State Board of Education News - Summer 2017

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June 2017 State Board of Education meeting news

2017 State Board of Education
2017 State Board of Education

High school language arts and ESOL standards approved

Revised high school English language arts and reading curriculum standards and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) curriculum standards won final approval from State Board of Education members June 23 on a 13-0 vote.

The new high school TEKS will be implemented in the 2020-2021 school year.

Five new charters win commissioner-SBOE blessings

Five charter applicants approved by Commissioner of Education Mike Morath won the endorsement of the State Board of Education in June. The new charters are located in Houston, Dallas and Austin.

Revised science TEKS posted

The revised science Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for kindergarten through twelfth grade, which were approved by the board in April, are now posted. Unlike the recently approved language arts and reading standards which underwent major restructuring and revisions, the science TEKS were streamlined or reduced. The streamlining was done in response to concerns that it was difficult to teach all the grade-level standards during a standard school year.

Long-range plan committee being established

The State Board of Education has begun establishing the membership of the 18-member Long-Range Plan Steering Committee. A public nomination period will open soon. This committee will help the board establish goals for public education for the next five to seven years. Community meetings and a statewide survey will also help inform the crafting of these goals.

Dozens of education bills become law

More than 1,000 bills were filed during the 85th Texas Legislature that impacted the public schools, the Texas Education Agency or their employees. Ultimately about 40 of those bills became law. Two of the most high profile bills made major revisions to the A-F accountability system and increased reporting requirements related to inappropriate student-teacher relationships. We summarize a sampling of the new laws for you. On July 18, lawmakers return for a special session in which at least four education issues are expected to be discussed. Later this summer, the Texas Education Agency will issue a briefing book containing details about each of the bills passed.

Summary of June SBOE action posted

A summary of action taken at the June 23 State Board of Education general meeting is posted at

Students recognized for charitable, unselfish work

Cooper Philpot
Cooper Philpot of Arlington ISD was one of 15 Student Heroes.

The State Board of Education recently honored 15 public school students as 2017 Student Heroes for exhibiting caring and compassionate assistance to people in their schools and communities. Some of their activities included tutoring, preparing bags of essential items for foster care children, creating a drum line, assisting students with disabilities and hosting birthday parties for homeless children.

Veteran SBOE member announces retirement

SBOE member David Bradley

David Bradley, one of the State Board of Education’s most tenured members, announced in June that he will not seek re-election in 2018.

Bradley, who represents Southeast Texas, was first elected to the board in 1996 and has been re-elected six times.

Bradley earned a reputation as a strong protector of the $35 billion Permanent School Fund and as a charter school advocate.

Board chair Donna Bahorich, left, and SBOE member Tom Maynard, right, present a resolution to Sharon Pierce.
Board Chair Donna Bahorich, left, and SBOE member Tom Maynard, right, present a resolution to FCCLA leader Sharon Pierce

Board honors FCCLA leader

The State of Education passed a resolution honoring Sharon Pierce, the long-time director of the Texas Association of Family Career and Community Leaders of America. Pierce, who retired in June, worked in the education field for 42 years, including 36 as the state leader for the Family Career and Community Leaders of America. Pierce also recently was named the FCCLA state advisor of the Year.