January 2014 Committee on Instruction Item 1

Proposed Amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 74, Curriculum Requirements,
Subchapter C, Other Provisions, §74.24, Credit by Examination
(Second Reading and Final Adoption)

January 31, 2014

COMMITTEE ON INSTRUCTION: ACTION
STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION: ACTION

SUMMARY:
This item presents for second reading and final adoption proposed amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 74, Curriculum Requirements, Subchapter C, Other Provisions, §74.24, Credit by Examination, to align the rule with changes made to the requirements for credit by examination in House Bill (HB) 2694 and Senate Bill (SB) 1365, 83rd Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2013.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY: Texas Education Code (TEC), §28.023, as amended by HB 2694 and SB 1365, 83rd Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2013.

EFFECTIVE DATE: The proposed effective date of the proposed amendment to 19 TAC §74.24 is 20 days after filing as adopted with the Texas Register. Under TEC, §7.102(f), the State Board of Education (SBOE) must approve the rule action at second reading and final adoption by a vote of two-thirds of its members to specify an effective date earlier than the beginning of the 2014-2015 school year. The earlier effective date will enable districts to implement changes to credit by examination during the current school year as required by statute.

PREVIOUS BOARD ACTION: Section 74.24 was adopted effective September 1, 1996, and last amended effective September 1, 2008. A discussion item regarding proposed amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 74, Curriculum Requirements, Subchapter C, Other Provisions, §74.24, Credit by Examination, was presented to the Committee on Instruction during its September 2013 meeting. At the November 2013 meeting, the SBOE approved for first reading and filing authorization proposed amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 74, Curriculum Requirements, Subchapter C, Other Provisions, §74.24, Credit by Examination.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION AND SIGNIFICANT ISSUES: Section 74.24 addresses assessment for acceleration in Kindergarten through Grade 5 and assessment for course credit in Grades 6-12. The rule also outlines general provisions for the administration of credit by examination.

Companion bills HB 2694 and SB 1365, passed by the 83rd Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2013, amended the TEC, §28.023, and the requirements for credit and acceleration by examination. Changes to the statute increase the number of testing opportunities a school district must provide each school year. The amended statute also requires each school district to approve, to the extent available, at least four examinations for acceleration or for credit for each academic subject. Each examination must satisfy guidelines to be established by the SBOE, and the approved examinations must include College Board Advanced Placement (AP) examinations and College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) examinations. The legislation also reduces the minimum score requirement from 90 percent to 80 percent in order for a student to accelerate or be awarded credit. It also allows a student who earned credit for a course with an end-of-course (EOC) assessment as a result of credit by examination to be exempt from the EOC requirement for that course.

Attachment II reflects the text of the proposed amendment to 19 TAC §74.24, as approved for first reading and filing authorization by the SBOE in November 2013, for consideration by the SBOE for second reading and final adoption.

FISCAL IMPACT: There will be no additional costs for state government as a result of enforcing or administering the proposed amendment. However, fiscal implications are expected for school districts and charter schools if they choose to develop their own credit by examinations rather than purchase an examination from an approved provider.

It is impossible to estimate the cost of developing credit by examinations that meet the guidelines in the proposed rule as it will vary from district to district based on their resources and process. Additionally, districts have the option of purchasing the credit by examinations from an outside entity rather than developing their own. This option should not lead to any new costs to districts as it is already an alternative that districts use to provide credit by examination.

Senate Bill 1365 requires a district to use AP and CLEP examinations to satisfy the credit by examination. Statute does not permit a district to charge a fee for credit by examination. Consequently, there will likely be additional administrative costs to districts to administer more examinations at more frequent intervals. As decisions regarding assessments administered for credit by examinations are made by each individual school district, it is difficult to estimate the amount of impact on any given district.

The agency has determined that there is no direct adverse economic impact for small businesses and microbusinesses; therefore, no regulatory flexibility analysis, specified in Texas Government Code, §2006.002, is required.

PUBLIC AND STUDENT BENEFIT: Students would have additional options and test administration opportunities for examinations for acceleration and credit by examination.

PROCEDURAL AND REPORTING IMPLICATIONS: The proposed rule action would have no new procedural and reporting requirements.

LOCALLY MAINTAINED PAPERWORK REQUIREMENTS: The proposed rule action would have no new locally maintained paperwork requirements.

PUBLIC COMMENTS: Following the November 2013 SBOE meeting, notice of the proposed amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 74, Curriculum Requirements, Subchapter C, Other Provisions, §74.24, Credit by Examination, was filed with the Texas Register initiating the official public comment period. A summary of public comments received regarding the proposal will be provided to the SBOE prior to and during the January 2014 meeting.

ALTERNATIVES: None.

OTHER COMMENTS AND RELATED ISSUES: None.

MOTION TO BE CONSIDERED: The State Board of Education:

By an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the members of the board, approve for second reading and final adoption proposed amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 74, Curriculum Requirements, Subchapter C, Other Provisions, §74.24, Credit by Examination, with an effective date of 20 days after filing as adopted with the Texas Register.

Staff Member Responsible:
Monica Martinez, Associate Commissioner
Standards and Programs

Attachments:
I. Statutory Citations (PDF, 17KB)
II. Text of Proposed Amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 74, Curriculum Requirements, Subchapter C, Other Provisions, §74.24, Credit by Examination (PDF, 24KB)