October 20, 2021: Texas Educator Preparation Programs Newsletter

Texas Education Agency

October 20, 2021

Texas Educator Preparation Programs Newsletter

CTE teacher


“Even miracles take a little time” – Pinocchio 

For those in education, October has traditionally been a difficult month. The joy and energy from the beginning of the semester has slowly begun to disappear, the struggles have become more apparent, and the fruits of your labor are not always obvious. At these times, we all need a reminder that things take time. Stay the course and continue the good work and, in the end, we will see miracles come to light. 

Our goal is for the newsletter to serve as a support by compiling 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.   

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

Upcoming Events

Event: Insight to Impact Dashboards Update Webinar
 This webinar will provide an update about the ongoing EPP dashboard project.
Event Date: 
Wednesday, October 20
Click here to register.
Event Time: 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. CST 

Event: ELAR 7-12 Redesigned Exam (331) Framework Overview Webinar 
Description: This webinar will guide participants through the redesigned English Language Arts and Reading 7-12 Redesigned Exam (331) Framework.
Event Date: Thursday, October 21 (Join here) 
Registration is not required.  
Event Time1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. CST

Upcoming Deadlines

New Topic: ASEP Technology Fee
Action Item: 
Submit payment of fee, per invoice
Due Date: 
November 16, 2021

Topic: Last Administration Date for TExES #117 & TExES #291 Exams
Action Item: 
Share deadline information with candidates and encourage early exam registration. 
Due Date: Last administered December 31, 2021

Topic: Test-Limit Waiver
Action Item: 
Last date to submit waiver applications for Core Subjects EC-6 (291) & ELAR 4-8 (117) - if applicable for the candidate 
Due Date: December 1, 2021

Table Of Contents

EPP Points of Contact

Your best source for information and support at the TEA.   

As an EPP, your main point of contact is your Education Specialist.   

  • To view a list of EPPs and their associated Education Specialist, please click here.   
  • For easiest assistance, file a HelpDesk Ticket.  

Educator Preparation Program Support

Updates related to Educator Preparation Program Management

New: Innovative EPP Commendation Call  
In October of 2019, the SBEC approved a framework and procedures for determining EPP Commendations. Commendation Category 4, the Innovative Educator Preparation category, gives the SBEC the opportunity to designate EPPs that have implemented innovative approaches in a defined area of emphasis.  

For 2020-2021, the SBEC seeks to recognize EPPs that engage in comprehensive partnerships with LEAs to support district-specific needs in one or more of the following areas:   

  • supporting districts and mentor teachers through the pandemic,   
  • accelerating learning in response to COVID-related learning loss,   
  • addressing staffing challenges, and   
  • implementing best practices that emerged from EPP and/or district responses to the COVID pandemic.   

The call for applications can be found here and will also be posted to the Program Provider Resources page, along with the application template, on October 22, 2021. EPPs must respond to the call by December 1, 2021 with a complete set of materials to be eligible for recognition. The TEA reviews applications for topic alignment and completeness. Complete and appropriate applications are reviewed by an SBEC committee which recommends EPPs for the commendation, which is then approved by the full SBEC. Recognition is awarded at the discretion of the committee and the SBEC.   

New: Public Data Sets 
TEA has posted the de-identified public data sets from the 2020-2021 surveys, along with the Indicator 3 data set to the program provider webpage. The following data sets are now available on the Program Provider Resources page: 

  • Principal Survey 2020-2021 
  • Exit Survey 2020-2021 
  • Teacher Survey 2020-2021 
  • Student Growth Indicator 2018-2019 

As a reminder, TEA sent EPPs their local data for the principal survey, teacher survey, and student growth indicator on 10/4. Since personally identifiable information is not collected as part of the Exit survey, TEA does not have an identified data set available for that survey to distribute to EPPs. 

EPP ASEP Fee Invoices 
On Friday, 10/15, TEA distributed invoices for the ASEP Technology Fee for 2020-2021 to EPPs. This fee is assessed for each candidate who was admitted to your educator preparation program during the 2020-2021 academic year. The number of candidates is taken from the number of individuals reported as admitted by your educator preparation program in ECOS 

The invoice included payment information, including information about how to pay using ACH or how to submit a payment by mail. Credit cards are not accepted.  

TEA sent invoices to the EPP Legal Authority. Payment is due 30 days after receipt. Additional information about the ASEP Technology Fee is located in 19 TAC §229.9. 

EPP Insight to Impact Dashboards Update Webinar 
TEA will host a webinar on Wednesday, October 20 from 4:00-5:00 PM CST. During this webinar, we look forward to sharing updates about the Insight to Impact dashboard project, along with future plans. We value your input and feedback and encourage you to join us for this informational session. Click here to register 

EPP Insight to Impact: Project Update At-a-Glance 
We recently completed our first proof of concept for the Insight to Impact Data Dashboards. Thanks to the hard work of our EPP stakeholder focus group, we were able to create a first pass at visualizations for Insight to Impact. Click here to view a project update.  

Educator Standards and Testing

Updates related to Educator Standards and Certification Testing   

New: ELAR 4-8 (217): Open Registration 
Registration for the redeveloped English Language Arts and Reading 4–8 (217) exam is now open for testing beginning January 1, 2022. Approval has been uploaded for those programs already approved for ELAR 4-8. Please make sure to give your candidates the correct exam approval. 

Please see the informational one-pager that addresses timelines and other frequently asked questions related to the exam launch, program requirements, and candidate preparation resources. Review the Required Texas Certification Test Chart for the last date the ELAR 4-8 (117) can be used for certification.    

ETS Seeking Constructed Response Scorers for PASL 
ETS invites school leaders and preparation faculty to participate in the online scoring of the ETS® Performance Assessment for School Leaders (PASL). This is an excellent opportunity for school leaders and preparation program faculty to become more familiar with this certification exam. Professionals who meet the criteria listed here are eligible to be scoring professionals (raters) for the PASL assessment.  

The Preparation Manual for English Language Arts and Reading 4-8 (217) is now available on the Texas Educator Certification Examination Program website. The manual can be accessed here


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

Q: A 2017-2018 Health EC-12 finisher candidate contacted our EPP requesting test approval for the TExES #157 Health EC-12. Since the test and standards have not changed, how do we provide test approval for the finisher candidate whose approval was previously removed? 
AIf the finisher candidate qualifies for test approval, log into ECOS, click on the Test Approval drop-down menu, and select either “Search/Maintain Candidates” or “Maintain Test List”. 

If you choose the “Search/Maintain Candidates” option, you will need the candidate’s SSN, first and last name, or TEA ID # to find the candidate’s ECOS profile. Once you get to the Maintain Test Approval Information screen, you can click on the exam hyperlink under the Test Code/Description column. This will take you to the Add/Edit Test Approvals screen and allow you to edit the test approval in the Approval row.  

If you choose the Maintain Test List option from the Test Approval drop-down menu in ECOS, you will filter for “Removed” and the academic year the candidate was admitted to the EPP. You can then find the candidate’s name and revise the test approval status under the Status column.  

Don’t forget to save the test approval revision before you leave ECOS. 

Q: Does a candidate receive an automatic email from TEA once test approval is identified as “eligible” in ECOS? 
A: Yes, candidates receive an automatic email from TEA once the EPP uploads test approval to the candidate’s ECOS account. Since this can cause confusion, TEA recommends notifying candidates of this and explaining the test approval process, including the program’s test readiness requirements and how to request “approved for one attempt” statusA candidate’s test approval status must be changed to “approved for one attempt” for it to show on the educator’s account when scheduling an exam with Pearson.

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.   

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

Lesson Study Gateway Resources

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

Texas Teach Like a Champion (TLAC)   

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

Texas TLAC One Pager for EPPs

Full scope and sequence of upcoming edTPA training opportunities.   

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