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Aiming Higher: Meeting the Challenges of Education Reform in Texas

Aiming Higher: Meeting the Challenges of Education Reform in Texas

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Published by Achieve, Inc.
At the request of the Texas commissioner of education, Achieve performed an external review of the Lone Star State's education reforms. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) sponsored the subsequent policy review. Aiming Higher focuses on the state's role in setting and measuring higher academic standards; holding schools, districts and students accountable for results; strengthening teaching; and helping schools and districts build capacity to make the changes consistent with the reforms while sustaining public support for them.

In conjunction with nationally respected education experts, Achieve found that Texas' strategy for improving its schools has been consistent, reasonable and incremental over the span of nearly two decades. This has resulted in assessments that are well aligned to standards and that are generally clear and rigorous. The state's accountability provisions and professional development programs also are aligned to the standards and tests.

Achieve recommended that policymakers stay true to the legislature's intentions in the 1999 education reform law by ensuring that the new state tests are more challenging for all students and schools. The state should continue to hold the academic bar high but respond reasonably to initial poor results by providing extra support for struggling students and addressing public concerns to keep support strong.
At the request of the Texas commissioner of education, Achieve performed an external review of the Lone Star State's education reforms. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) sponsored the subsequent policy review. Aiming Higher focuses on the state's role in setting and measuring higher academic standards; holding schools, districts and students accountable for results; strengthening teaching; and helping schools and districts build capacity to make the changes consistent with the reforms while sustaining public support for them.

In conjunction with nationally respected education experts, Achieve found that Texas' strategy for improving its schools has been consistent, reasonable and incremental over the span of nearly two decades. This has resulted in assessments that are well aligned to standards and that are generally clear and rigorous. The state's accountability provisions and professional development programs also are aligned to the standards and tests.

Achieve recommended that policymakers stay true to the legislature's intentions in the 1999 education reform law by ensuring that the new state tests are more challenging for all students and schools. The state should continue to hold the academic bar high but respond reasonably to initial poor results by providing extra support for struggling students and addressing public concerns to keep support strong.

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Published by: Achieve, Inc. on Feb 23, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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A
CHIEVE
S
B
ENCHMARKING
I
NITIATIVE
Meeting the Challengesof Education Reform in
TEXAS
Aiming Higher 
 Achieve, Inc.
 
About Achieve, Inc.
Achieve is an independent, bipartisan, nonprofit organization created by governors andcorporate leaders to help states and the private sector raise standards and performance inAmerica's schools. Founded at the 1996 National Education Summit, Achieve has spon-sored two additional Summits in 1999 and 2001.Achieve helps states raise academic standards, measure performance against those standards,establish clear accountability for results and strengthen public confidence in our educationsystem. To do this, we:
help states
benchmark
their standards, assessments and accountability systems againstthe best in the country and the world;
provide sustained
public leadership
and advocacy for the movement to raise stan-dards and improve student performance;
build
partnerships
that allow states to work together to improve teaching and learning and raise student achievement; and
serve as a
national clearinghouse
on education standards and school reform.
 
A
IMING
H
IGHER
:
M
EETING THE
C
HALLENGESOF
E
DUCATION
R
EFORM IN
T
EXAS
A Policy ReviewPrepared by Achieve, Inc., forThe Texas Education AgencyAchieve’s Benchmarking InitiativeJune 2002

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