October 27, 2020: Texas Educator Preparation Programs Newsletter

Texas Education Agency

October 27, 2020

Texas Educator Preparation Programs Newsletter

student at computer, remote learning


Over the past weeks, we have received some great feedback on this EPP newsletter. Based on feedback, TEA has been able to start an archive of past newsletters. This will allow folks to see past newsletters and updates, for reference.  

As we first announced last week, we have started an archive of past newsletters. Please use this link to view the previous EPP weekly newsletters. 

If you are not currently subscribed to the newsletter, please sign up at the link below.   

Table of Contents

Upcoming Events

10/28/2020: 2019-2020 ASEP Retrospective Webinar, 10:00-10:45 a.m. Sign up here. 

11/2/2020: STR webinar series: Reading Academies Deep Dive, 10:00-12:00 pm 

11/12/2020: STR webinar Series: Reading Pedagogy and Constructed Response Deep Divetime TBD  

Upcoming Deadlines

Topic Action Item Due Date
Educator Testing Continue to communicate with all candidates who are impacted by the STR exam transition. ASAP
EPP Support Deadline to submit the STR Exam Letter of Attestation form to your TEA program specialist.   December 1, 2020
Educator Testing 

Deadline for candidates to submit new, missing information, or corrections for the Test-Limit Waiver  application for HB3 impacted fields. 

December 1, 2020 

Educator Certification 

Final day for standard certifications to be issued without the STR exam requirement for HB 3 impacted fields.

December 31, 2020  


Educator Preparation Program Support

Updates related to Educator Preparation Program Management  

Continuing Approval Reviews 
The 2020-2021 review cycle started the week of October 5th and has just completed week three. New for 2020-2021 is the addition of the virtual on-site review. Many thanks to the EPPs who are working with us as we develop these new processes. We will spotlight this new form of a continuing five-year approval review next week!  

ASEP Retrospective Webinar 
Now that ASEP Reporting for 2019-2020 is complete, we would like to offer a brief retrospective. Please join us for this webinar where TEA will discuss key issues encountered and some solutions to support programs as we go into the 2020-2021 reporting year. Please register here. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinarThis webinar is appropriate for EPP faculty and staff who report ASEP data to TEA. 

ASEP Technology Fee 
TEA has distributed invoices to programs for the ASEP Technology fee. As a reminder, this fee, per 19 TAC 229.9, is $35 per admitted candidate. We directly invoice programs for this fee following the end of the academic year. The number of candidates is taken directly from the number of individuals reported as admitted by your educator preparation program in the Educator Certification Online System (ECOS).  

Invoices were distributed to program legal authorities on October 16, 2020. If your program admitted candidates in 2019-2020 but your legal authority did not receive an invoice, please file a HelpDesk Ticket. 

New this year is guidance on how to make this payment using an ACH method, along with how to pay by check. TEA cannot accept credit card payments for this fee.  

Educator Standards and Testing

Updates related to Educator Standards and Certification Testing

Updates regarding Representative Exams impacted by HB3 (effective 10/27/20) 
Beginning January 1, 2021, the four TExES certification exams listed below will not include content that aligns to the Science of Teaching Reading (293) exam framework: 

  • Core Subjects: Grades 4–8 (211) 
  • English Language Arts and Reading: Grades 4–8 (117) 
  • English Language Arts and Reading/Social Studies: Grades 4–8 (113) 
  • Core Subjects: Early Childhood–Grade 6 (391) 

Candidates will not be tested on duplicative content in both the STR exam and these exams. 

For fields 211, 117, and 113, the Texas Education Agency and Pearson reviewed the current Representative Examinations for duplicative content aligned to the STR exam framework, with the following outcomes listed in the link under the tab: “Representative Exams Impacted by House Bill 3 (10/27/20): 

Last week, all programs should have received a send blast from Pearson with the information contained in the link. Pearson will also redistribute this communication in their November newsletter.  

Updated: STR Webinar Series: Reading Academies Deep Dive:  
The Reading Academies Deep Dive is approaching next week on 11/2/20 from 10:00 am – 12:00 pm. The training will be focused on the research behind the academies, the design considerations for the academies, and the prioritized content.  

TEA is currently reviewing the jot form requests for participation in the webinar. The window to submit those requests closed 10/26/20TEA will be sending out the zoom webinar link to two attendees per program this week. If for some reason you were unable to access the jot form by 10/26/20, please email guiomar.andujar@tea.texas.gov to request the zoom link. 

STR Exam Informational One-Pagers for Candidates Posted to the STR Exam Webpage 
TEA staff has developed a suite of STR exam informational one-page documents that are intended to outline the most critical information that candidates pursuing certification in an HB3-impacted field need to know about the STR exam requirement. Staff has developed specific one-pagers for those groups of candidates who may be issued standard certificates prior to the STR exam requirement and one-pagers for each certification field impacted by the STR exam requirement as of January 1, 2021.  

We encourage EPPs to share these documents with their candidates through multiple communication channels, to ensure that candidates are well aware of the STR exam requirement. These one-pagers can be accessed via the links below or through the STR Exam webpage (tea.texas.gov/str).  

Important information for: 

Science of Teaching Reading Letters of Attestation Due December 1, 2020 
All EPPs that are currently approved to offer preparation in any of the following House Bill 3 impacted certification fields are required to submit a Letter of Attestation to the TEA to indicate their ability and readiness to successfully prepare candidates for certification in these fields 

  • Core Subjects with Science of Teaching Reading: Early Childhood–Grade 6  
  • Core Subjects with Science of Teaching Reading: Grades 4–8  
  • English Language Arts and Reading with Science of Teaching Reading: Grades 4–8  
  • English Language Arts and Reading/Social Studies with Science of Teaching Reading: Grades 4–8    

EPPs received the STR Letter of Attestation document in December 2019. The STR Letter of Attestation template can be found at the following link.  

EPPs that choose not to prepare candidates in these fields that require successful completion of the STR exam by not submitting the STR Letter of Attestation will be removed from the ability to certify candidates in these areas.  

Scores for the Science of Teaching Reading exam will be reported within 28 days of testing. The first score reports for this exam will be received on 02/05/2021. 

Educator Certification

Information and updates related to Educator Certification 

Recommendation Support 
Did you know that you can easily identify candidates with pending certification recommendations?   

  • Login to ECOS Entity (your secure green screen online access)  
  • On the left side of your entity main menu, look for the Standard Certification, Intern, and Probationary tabs  
  • Click on the down arrow, then click on Recommendation List  
  • When the page loads, on the right side, you will be able to populate the School Year and Select Only sections  
  • For School Year, select either 2019-2020 or 2020-2021; and for Select Only, use Not Recommended   
  • This will display your list of candidates for a particular school year that need your support with an online recommendation for certification  
  • Each candidate’s name is an active link that you can click on to provide the required information to complete your entity recommendation for certification  
  • Once you have entered all required information, please click on the green “Recommend” button at the bottom of the page  

We recommend EPPs check this queue on a weekly basis, to manage and complete required entity recommendations on candidate requests for certification.   

Updates About SBEC, Rules, and Legislation

Updates related to actions by the State Board for Educator Certification, the State Board of Education, and the Legislature. 

The State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) met on October 9, 2020The agenda for the meeting is hereDuring item 11 on the agenda the SBEC voted to approve 16 EPPs from the 2019-2020 review cycle to continue to operate as approved educator preparation programs for another five years.  

The following EPPs were approved by the SBEC:  

  • A Career in Teaching ACP – McAllen
  • American College of Education 
  • Dallas Christian College 
  • Dallas ISD ACP 
  • Education Service Center Region 5  
  • Education Service Center Region 10 
  • Harris County Department of Education ACP 
  • Howard Payne University 
  • Our Lady of the Lake University 
  • TeacherBuilder ACP 
  • Texas Southern University 
  • Texas Wesleyan University 
  • University of North Texas – Dallas 
  • University of Texas – Arlington 
  • University of Texas – El Paso 
  • Urban Teachers  

At the December SBEC meeting, any remaining EPPs in the 2019-2020 review cycle that have successfully completed their review will be considered for continuing approval.  


Every newsletter we take this space to highlight questions that we have heard from EPPs.  

Q: Am I still able to recommend candidates for a WPRO certificate? 
A: For an EPP to recommend the WPRO, a candidate had to have finished clinical teaching, internship, or practicum in the Fall 2019 or Spring 2020. As we get further from those dates, fewer and fewer candidates are qualifying for the WPRO. Please contact your assigned program specialist if you have a specific question about whether or not a candidate qualifies for a WPRO. 

Q: How can I make sure that certificates I've recommended have issued? 
A: Using the Recommendation List under the Standard Certificate button in ASEP, programs can search for certified candidates by filtering the search using the “Certified” option.   

EPP Points of Contact

Your best source for information and support at the TEA 

As an Educator Preparation Program, your main point of contact is your Program Specialist.   

To view a list of EPPs and their associated Program Specialist, please click here.    

For easiest assistance, file a HelpDesk Ticket.

For More Information

Information regarding educator certification testing can be accessed at the Texas Educator Certification Exam website 

Information regarding the Science of Teaching Reading Exam can be accessed at tea.texas.gov/str 

Information regarding edTPA 2020-2021 information opportunities can be accessed here 

Information and updates regarding the Performance Assessment for School Leaders (PASL) can be accessed at the Important Updates link.  

Updated information related to the COVID-19 response can be accessed here

From Our Programs

When possible, we present updates and shared practices from EPPs around Texas. If you have information you would like to share in this space, please reach out to your program specialist.

Help Desk Link