April 6, 2021: Texas Educator Preparation Programs Newsletter

Texas Education Agency

April 6, 2021

Texas Educator Preparation Programs Newsletter

student at computer, remote learning


“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” - Albert Einstein 

This has been a season of newness and adaptation. As educators we are continually changing our practices and process to best fit the needs of our students. Although not every change works out the way we envision, we never stop trying and never back away from a new idea or concept. Trying something new may seem scary, but just remember why it is important to step out of the box at times. As we strive to support you in your 
endeavors, we have compiled the most up-to-date information concerning what you need to know that impacts your candidates in the coming weeks. Please thoroughly read all the sections for reminders, upcoming events, to dos, and FAQs. 

We hope that this newsletter provides clarity and platform for access to all the important updates. 

If you are not currently subscribed to the newsletter, please sign up at the link below
Educator Preparation Program Listserv Registration  

Table of Contents

Upcoming Events

Topic Description Event Date Event Time

Task Submission:
Q & A 

Opportunity to view previously recorded webinar and ask questions

April 8, 2021

1:00-2:00 pm CT 

edTPA 101

Overview for faculty, instructors, and P-12 partners new to edTPA 

April 14, 2021 

3:00-4:00 pm  


Upcoming Deadlines

Topic Action Item Due Date

PASL Exam  

Deadline for PASL Task Submission   

April 13, 2021, 
1:00 PM C 

Waiver Probationary (WPRO) or Waiver Intern (WINT) Certificate  

 Complete all Testing Requirements

 Before the WPRO or WINT certificate expires 


Educator Preparation Program Support

Updates related to Educator Preparation Program Management  

NewSTR Certificate Category Update  
For this current academic year, there are a number of candidates who are completing an internship on an intern or probationary certificate in an HB 3-impacted certificate field with the original certificate names. When these candidates successfully complete their internship, EPPs will recommend the certificate with the new (“with STR”) name, as the old certificates are no longer available. These candidates will then be issued a certificate with the new certificate names when issued a standard certificate. For example, a candidate serving on an intern Core Subjects: EC-6 certificate will be issued a Core Subjects with the Science of Teaching Reading: EC-6 standard certificate. 

For candidates getting their standard certification at the end of the 2020-2021 academic year in these certificate fields, EPPs are not required to change the finisher records list to update the name of the certificate field to the “with STR” name, though they are encouraged to do so for data consistency. As usual, EPPs are required to mark candidates as finishers on the finisher records list. 

For the 2021-2022 academic year, the TEA Data team is working to collaborate with EPPs to facilitate a data fix to update other enrolled candidate records on the finisher records list to shift from the old cert field names to the new cert field names. More information about this will be provided at a later date 

NewEarly Childhood: Pre-kindergarten – 3rd grade Approved EPP Clarification 
One of the FAQs from last week’s newsletter listed EPPs who are currently approved to offer the new Early Childhood: Pre-k through 3rd grade certification. In addition to the EPPs listed, University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley is also approved to offer the EC-3 certification in the undergraduate route. Please see a revised list of EC-3 approved EPPs below. 

Midwestern State University, Sam Houston State University, Tarleton State University, University of Texas – Permian Basin, and University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley are approved for prepare candidates for EC: Pre-k – 3rd grade in the undergraduate route. Region 14 Education Service Center and YES Preparatory Public Schools are approved to prepare candidates in the EC: Pre-k – 3rd grade in the alternative route. 

ASEP Mid-Year Data Sets  
EPPs were sent the 2020-2021 mid-year data sets, including observation, pass rate, and finisher records list data, following the ASEP Mid-Year Update webinar on Wednesday, March 24th, 2021. EPPs can use this information to support their reportingIf your EPP did not yet have data for a particular data set, TEA did not send a file for it. Please contact your assigned program specialist if you have questions about the mid-year data sets.  

Educator Standards and Testing

Updates related to Educator Standards and Certification Testing

NewELAR 4-8 Pilot Testing 
Pearson is seeking participants in the upcoming pilot test for the redeveloped English Language Arts and Reading: Grades 4-8 exam. For information on eligibility, incentives, advantages of participation, scheduling, and registration for pilot tests, please visit the Pilot Testing website here: https://home.pearsonvue.com/espilot/tea. Registration will open in early to mid-April 2021. 

NewInteractive Practice Exams and Representative Exams for Science of Teaching Reading, Early Childhood: PK-3, and Educational Diagnostician  
The Science of Teaching Reading (293), Early Childhood: PK-3 (292), and Educational Diagnostician (253) exams launched in January 2021. New preparation manuals for these exams are currently available on the Pearson website 

New interactive practice examinations will be available for all three exams on April 8, 2021. 

New representative examinations will be available to order no later than the dates listed below. 

  • Early Childhood PK-3 (292): April 21, 2021 
  • Educational Diagnostician (253): April 21, 2021 
  • Science of Teaching Reading (293): April 29, 2021 

To order a representative examination, authorized representatives from SBEC-approved educator preparation programs (EPPs) can send a request for an order form to estestvoucher@pearson.com. 

NewPASL Task Submission Deadline on 4/13/21 and Upcoming Task Submission Q & A from ETS 
The submission deadline for all PASL tasks is April 13, 2021 at 1:00 pm CT. For programs seeking final support to move candidates across the task submission finish line, ETS Is offering Q &A session this week on Thursday, April 8, 2021 at 1:00 pm –2:00 pm CT. ETS will be directly corresponding to invite programs as well. 

You may register through the following link: 

NewTexas edTPA Pilot Spring 2021 Institute  
Last week, March 29-31, edTPA pilot programs met in a virtual conference space for the first edTPA Pilot Spring Institute. Over the course of 3 days pilot programs engaged in sessions focused on strategies for successful edTPA implementation and collaborated 
each other around best practices and considerations. Thank you to all institute participants, and a special thank you to all Texas edTPA pilot programs that facilitated sessions during the institute—we appreciate your vulnerability and willingness to share lessons learned from your pilot experience. If you are interested in learning more about edTPA please join us at this month’s upcoming edTPA 101 session.  

There is no email notification sent to EPPs when scores are posted. Scores are reported within 7 days of testing for many exams, and within 28 days for exams that include constructed-response questions. The earliest date that candidates and EPPs could receive a score report is noted in the individual schedules for each exam which is available in the Scores section of the Pearson website. EPPs can access candidate data according to these schedules directly through ResultsAnalyzer® or ECOS. 

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 87th Legislature Regular Session gaveled in on January 12, 2021. For your reference, here is information on the House Committee on Public Education and the Senate Committee on Education.  


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

Q: If a currently certified educator wants to add a HB 3-impacted certification category 
through the Additional Certification by Exam route, will they be required to take the Science of Teaching Reading exam? 
A: Yes. A passing score on the Science of Teaching Reading exam is required for standard certification through the Additional Certification by Exam route for the HB 3-impacted certificate categoriesThese certification categories include: 

  • Core Subjects with the Science of Teaching Reading: EC-6 
  • Core Subjects with the Science of Teaching Reading: 4-8 
  • English Language Arts and Reading with the Science of Teaching Reading: 4-8 
  • English Language Arts and Reading/Social Studies with the Science of Teaching Reading: 4-8 

Please note that currently certified candidates will not be able to take the new Early Childhood: Pre-k – 3rd certification through the Additional Certification by Exam route.  

Q: I have a candidate that is going to be a 20-21 Finisher but does not have observations in 20-21 because they were completed in a previous year. How do I handle this for ASEP reporting? 
A: As a reminder, all observations must be entered into ECOS in the reporting year in which they occur. During the summer, TEA will provide additional information to support programs that have failed to report observations that occurred in previous academic 

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 

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 

To view previous editions of the weekly newsletter, please see the Texas Educator Preparation Program Weekly Newsletter webpage. 

Resources at a Glance...  

Practice based preparation resources for virtual field-based experience: Provides model lessons and video of instructional delivery. 

Practice based preparation resources for virtual field-based experience: Provides content neutral pedagogical skill building through observing model of and practicing the same high leverage skill  

Full scope and sequence of upcoming edTPA training opportunities.  

From Our Programs

Get Connected—Collaborative STR Preparation Networking Group 

Are you interested in joining a collaborative network for learning about and preparing teachers for the STR exam? Share your contact information on this form to get the conversation started! Thank you to Melissa Stewart at Region 13 for driving this opportunity. 

Help Desk Link