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Education and Workforce

Texas public education faces a new paradigm with the sweeping reforms of HB 5 from the 83rd Legislative Session. TAB will work toward a strong accountability system for our public education system to ensure businesses have the necessary educated workforce. We will continue to advocate for changes in the system to ensure that students are graduating career or college ready. With 65% of jobs in Texas by the year 2020 requiring a post-secondary something, we will continue to work to ensure that are higher education system is creating an affordable and efficient environment that focuses on outcomes and not solely access.  TAB supports the following education initiatives: 

EDUCATION AND WORKFORCE

Academic excellence.

Support excellence initiatives aimed at moving students from minimum expectations to maximum achievement. Support rewarding districts for students who complete more rigorous high school courses.

Accountability.

Oppose any measures that weaken the current education accountability system. Oppose any additional monies into education without reform.

Adult basic education.

Support ABE that focuses on serving students who will be able to acquire the level of basic skills needed to enter the workforce.

Alternative certification.

Support additional alternative certification programs that provide school districts flexibility in hiring qualified people holding bachelors

 

Alternative Public School Accreditation. Support a voluntary method of accreditation for public schools, by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI).

Support a voluntary method of accreditation for public schools, by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI).

 

 

Arts Education.

Support high-quality fine arts education instruction and learning in all schools through the employment of certified arts education teachers and partnerships with community arts organizations. Maintain current fine arts education requirements.

Career and technology.

Support career and technology education in conjunction with public schools and community colleges where appropriate to meet the needs of Texas employers.

Career and technology funding.

Support legislation that tightens controls on career and technology money allocation. Support requiring districts that receive funding for career and technology to offer courses that prepare students with on-site or virtual on-site training rather than traditional classroom settings. Encourage increased funding for on-line curriculum and on-line testing.

Classroom size mandate.

Support legislation that creates flexibility for school districts in the requirement that K through 4 classrooms are comprised of no more than 23 students to one teacher, allowing school districts to use the 23:1 mandate as a district average.

Communities in Schools.

Maximize and fund the Communities in Schools Program in Texas, a dropout prevention organization that focuses on helping young people to successfully learn, stay in school and prepare for life.

Community colleges.

Support education at the community college level as an important contributor to training students for jobs in the workforce and provide a path for certification.

Dropout prevention.

Support measures that financially reward campuses for retaining students beyond the ninth grade.

Effectiveness.

Support efforts that would specifically include effectiveness as part of the criteria in the evaluation of teachers.

Funding Higher Education.

Support legislation that would provide that the funding of Higher Education be based on the completion of courses, not based upon classroom attendance on the 12th day of the semester.

GO Centers.

Support the continuation of funding for GO Centers that serve as primary points of coordination between the College for Texans campaign (to increase college enrollment) and local communities.

Higher Education System.

Support reasonable regulatory and legislative oversight of the higher education system, coupled with clear statements of goals, expectations and accountability of results. Support collaborative approaches among Texas

Incentives for math and science teachers.

Support teacher advancement initiatives like differentiated pay to help alleviate the shortage of math and science teachers in our public schools.

Internships.

Support a $1,000 franchise tax credit or other tax credit for companies offering a six to eight week internship for high school students in a recognized CTE pathway program.

Local control.

Support measures that give school districts the flexibility to meet the needs of their students. Support at-will employment for teachers, removing the state from setting the terms and conditions of employment.

Parental involvement.

Support measures encouraging parents to become active partners with their children

Pay for performance.

Support legislation that allows school districts to financially reward campuses that achieve exemplary student performance.

Physical education

. Support recess and other physical activity as part of the school programming to promote health and wellness.

School choice pilot program.

Support implementation and evaluation of a well-designed school choice pilot program, allowing students in low-performing or unsafe public schools to attend public or qualified private schools of their choice. The pilot program must be of sufficient magnitude to assess the impact a choice program would have on the students and the public school system.

School spending.

Support legislation requiring more financial transparency in school spending allowing taxpayers to see how their investment is being managed. Also, support an audit system for program specific success to ensure funds are spent on the intended programs.

Skills Development Program

. Support increased funding for the Skills Development Program administered by the Texas Workforce Commission. Maintain Skills Development Fund grants at the Texas Workforce Commission to improve workforce training.

Taxpayers' Savings Grant Program

. Support efficiency and school choice in public education. Support legislation that would create a grant program that would give parents up to 60% of the cost of tuition to be used at a private school. This program will provide parents with more choices in educating their children and will also produce significant cost-savings to the state. These savings can be dispersed to other students in the public education system. The grant program will also create competition among the education community.

Tax incentives

. Support legislative tax incentives to encourage business participation in education initiatives.

TEXAS Grants.

Support funding levels for TEXAS Grants that would provide scholarships for 100% of renewal and initially eligible students.

Texas School Ready!TM

Support high quality pre-k initiatives and legislation that put children on a pathway toward academic achievement. Programs such as the Texas School Ready!TM project deliver on promises of excellence by demonstrating strong accountability; leading to lasting results. TAB believes that these results ensure that children achieve their highest potential and become a successful part of Texas

Technology Workforce Development Grant Program.

Support the continuation of funding for the Texas Technology Workforce Development Grant program, which is awarded for computer science and electrical engineering instruction at various institutions of higher education in Texas.

The Parent Trigger

. Support this innovation in education reform that was recently passed into law in California. The Parent Trigger works like this: When half of the parents whose children attend a failing public school sign a petition requesting reform of the school, the school must either shut down, become a charter school, or undergo one of two other types of reform. The Parent Trigger has the potential to turbo-charge the transformation of education in every state by bringing grassroots regime change to public education.