Honorable Larry Taylor, Chair, Senate Committee on Education
Ursula Parks, Director, Legislative Budget Board
SB313 by Seliger (relating to the essential knowledge and skills of the required public school curriculum and the administration and reports relating to assessment instruments administered to public school students.), Committee Report 1st House, Substituted
Estimated Two-year Net Impact to General Revenue Related Funds for SB313, Committee Report 1st House, Substituted: a negative impact of ($5,155,128) through the biennium ending August 31, 2017.
The bill would make no appropriation but could provide the legal basis for an appropriation of funds to implement the provisions of the bill.
Probable Net Positive/(Negative) Impact to General Revenue Related Funds
Probable Savings/(Cost) from General Revenue Fund 1
The bill would require the State Board of Education (SBOE) to conduct a review of the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) in the foundation curriculum subjects and modify those TEKS to narrow the content and scope for each subject and grade level.
The bill would require the SBOE to consider the time a teacher would require to provide comprehensive instruction and the time a student would require to master a particular standard or skill for each subject and grade level; whether the TEKS can be comprehensively taught within the required number of school days; possible inclusion of the college and career readiness standards; and whether an assessment instrument adequately assesses a particular standard or skill.
The bill requires the SBOE to ensure priority in reviewing subjects for which an end-of-course (EOC) assessment is administered and complete the review and modifications process by September 1, 2018.
Beginning in school year 2015-16, the bill requires the SBOE to ensure each assessment instrument assesses only TEKS identified as readiness standards until the TEKS modification and review is complete.
The bill would require the SBOE to develop and adopt a chart indicating the alignment of the college readiness standards and expectations with the TEKS.
The bill would require TEA to provide a detailed report of a student's performance on each TEKS standard for which an assessment instrument is administered and to provide assessment results aggregated across classes, campuses, and districts to the student, the student's parent or guardian, and the student's teachers. The bill would allow the Commissioner to contract with a third party to provide the detailed report.
The bill would take effect September 1, 2015, or immediately if passed within the necessary voting margins.
Reviewing and modifying the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) standards would cost an estimated $1.5 million in fiscal year 2016 and $3.7 million in fiscal year 2017. This estimate assumes that the Texas Education Agency (TEA) would incur all costs associated with the review and modification of the TEKS standards in the 2016-17 biennium due to the September 1, 2018 implementation date. In addition, there would be an indeterminate cost in subsequent years related to revising instructional materials depending on the amount and complexity of the changes to the TEKS standards.
This estimate assumes TEA would convene committees to review and modify the TEKS in fiscal year 2016. Based on information provided by TEA, this analysis assumes the TEKS review would be limited to science and social studies, and would not include mathematics since those TEKS were recently reviewed or English language arts since those TEKS are currently scheduled for review in fiscal year 2015. Under these assumptions, two committees would meet for four days to review the TEKS standards. Each committee would include 101 members, totaling 202 committee members for the two committees. The estimated cost of travel reimbursement, including lodging, meals and incidentals, and mileage, would be $791 per committee member, totaling $639,128 in fiscal year 2016 ($791 per person x 202 committee members x four days). TEA estimates an additional 2016 cumulative cost of approximately $6,000 per meeting for audio/visual equipment, meeting room rental, and materials.
Following review of the TEKS by the committees, this estimate assumes TEA would redesign assessment instruments to remove all questions assessing the supporting standards, generating an anticipated one-time state cost of $192,000 in fiscal year 2017. TEA indicates a cost of $32,000 per assessment to modify the assessment and set new performance standards. This estimate assumes six separate tests (grades 5 and 8 science and grade 8 social studies assessments in English and Spanish) would be modified for a cost of $192,000 ($32,000 x 6 assessments) in fiscal year 2017.
In addition to the costs related to review and modification, this estimate assumes a total cost of $3.5 million in fiscal year 2017 to provide professional development to support implementation of the revised standards in science and social studies. Based on information provided by TEA, the estimated cost of providing professional development is $1.75 million per subject area for science and social studies for teachers in kindergarten to grade 12.
Changes to state curriculum review and assessment processes are subject to review by the U.S. Department of Education as a part of the No Child Left Behind Title I, Part A program. To the extent that changes resulting from the bill are not federally approved, the bill may result in the loss of significant federal funds.
Although districts and campuses currently have the ability to create teacher or classroom specific reports for test results through TEA's student assessment data portal, the bill requires TEA to provide a detailed report of a student's performance at the classroom level.
According to TEA, the agency does have the necessary systems in place to report at the classroom level through its assessment data portal. For school year 2015-16, districts and campuses would be required to make the appropriate classroom assignments by subject for each assessed student within the agency system to allow for accurate state-level reporting. However, district and campus capability to participate is unknown since many of the state's largest districts have reporting systems independent of the state's assessment data portal.
According to the TEA, beginning in school year 2016-17, the agency would need to collect student classroom assignments by subject through its Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) to accurately report at the classroom level. Although TEA indicates this requirement would not have a fiscal impact because PEIMS can handle multiple uploads a year and new data elements are not required, this estimate assumes the new data collection would cost an estimated $800,000 in fiscal year 2016. This estimate is based on the cost of previous similar PEIMS upgrades and does not include full-time equivalents since TEA currently has dedicated technology staff to make enhancements and modifications.
Local Government Impact
The bill would require school districts to administer the Texas Success Initiative (TSI) assessment as designated by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to each 10th grade student enrolled in the district by April 1 of each school year. The bill would require a student's admission, review, and dismissal committee to determine if the assessment instrument is appropriate for students enrolled in a special education program.
School districts and open-enrollment charter schools would incur costs related to administering the TSI assessment to each 10th grade student enrolled at the district. These costs would vary amongst districts depending on the number of 10th grade students enrolled. TEA estimates a cost of $10.9 million in fiscal year 2016 and $11.1 million in fiscal year 2017 to administer the tests to all 10th grade students.
School districts and open-enrollment charter schools may incur costs related to reporting to PEIMS on a more frequent basis.
701 Central Education Agency, 781 Higher Education Coordinating Board