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Speaker of the House Joe Straus releases Interim Charges for House Committees

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Fri, 10/21/2011

Yesterday, October 20, Joe Straus announced the Interim Charges for the Texas State House of Representatives Committees.  In addition to the charges assigned to each committee, he requested all committees find ways to increase transparency, accountability, and efficiency within the state government, and to make recommendations for significantly improving the state’s manufacturing capability.  Charges relevant to science educators are below, but for a complete list of all charges, click here.

    House Committee on Public Education:

·         Monitor state and local implementation of the New State Assessment System (STAAR), specifically the impact on students, instruction, teachers, and graduation or promotion rates. Review how districts are implementing the requirement that the end-of-course assessment count for 15 percent of the student’s course grade. Recommend any changes to graduation or testing requirements that promote instructional rigor and support postsecondary readiness while appropriately limiting an overreliance on standardized testing.

·         Review methods and best practices in Texas and other states to encourage more parental and community involvement in the education of Texas children.

    House Committee on Pensions, Investments & Financial Services:

·         Monitor all agencies and programs under the committee’s jurisdiction. Specifically, monitor the study by the Employees Retirement  System of Texas and the Teacher Retirement System of Texas of the viability of the current defined benefit plans as well as the implications and feasibility of creating a defined contributions or hybrid plan.

Don’t forget to sign up for the Conference for the Advancement of Science Teaching 2011!  The conference will be held from November 17-19, 2011 at the Dallas Convention Center. To register for CAST, click here.