April 14, 2021 Committee of the Full Board Item 2

Proposed New 19 TAC Chapter 112, Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Science, Subchapter C, High School, §§112.46-112.51
(First Reading and Filing Authorization)

April 16, 2021

COMMITTEE OF THE FULL BOARD: ACTION
STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION: ACTION

SUMMARY: This item presents for first reading and filing authorization proposed new 19 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) Chapter 112, Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Science, Subchapter C, High School, §112.46, Implementation of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Science, High School, Adopted 2021; §112.47, Aquatic Science, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); §112.48, Astronomy, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); §112.49, Earth Science Systems, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); §112.50, Environmental Systems, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); and §112.51, Specialized Topics in Science, Adopted 2021 (One Credit). The proposed new sections would update the standards to ensure they remain current.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY: Texas Education Code (TEC), §§7.102(c)(4); 28.002(a), (c), (j), and (n); and 28.025(a).

TEC, §7.102(c)(4), requires the State Board of Education (SBOE) to establish curriculum and graduation requirements.

TEC, §28.002(a), identifies the subjects of the required curriculum.

TEC, §28.002(c), requires the SBOE to by rule identify the essential knowledge and skills of each subject in the required curriculum that all students should be able to demonstrate and that will be used in evaluating instructional materials and addressed on the state assessment instruments.

TEC, §28.002(j), allows the SBOE to require laboratory instruction in secondary science courses and require a specific amount or percentage of time in a secondary science course that must be laboratory instruction.

TEC, §28.002(n), allows the SBOE to by rule develop and implement a plan designed to incorporate foundation curriculum requirements into the career and technical education curriculum required in TEC, §28.002.

TEC, §28.025(a), requires the SBOE to by rule determine the curriculum requirements for the foundation high school graduation program that are consistent with the required curriculum under TEC, §28.002.

The full text of statutory citations can be found in the statutory authority section of this agenda.

EFFECTIVE DATE: The proposed effective date of the proposed new sections is 20 days after filing as adopted with the Texas Register. Under TEC, §7.102(f), the 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 2021-2022 school year. The earlier effective date will enable districts to begin preparing for implementation of the revised high school science Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS).

PREVIOUS BOARD ACTION: The SBOE originally adopted the TEKS for science effective September 1, 1998. The SBOE adopted revisions to the science TEKS for high school effective August 4, 2009, and August 27, 2018. At the November 2020 SBOE meeting, the board approved for second reading and final authorization proposed new 19 TAC §§112.41-112.45 with an effective date of 20 days after filing with the Texas Register. A discussion item on 19 TAC §§112.47-112.51 was presented to the Committee of the Full Board at the January 2021 SBOE meeting.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION AND JUSTIFICATION: In accordance with statutory requirements that the SBOE by rule identify the essential knowledge and skills of each subject in the required curriculum, the SBOE follows a board-approved cycle to review and revise the essential knowledge and skills for each subject.

At the September 2019 meeting, SBOE members were asked to designate content advisors for the review and revision of the science TEKS. In December 2019, applications to serve on science TEKS review work groups were posted on the Texas Education Agency (TEA) website. Additionally in December 2019, TEA distributed a survey to collect information from educators regarding the review and revision of the science TEKS. TEA staff provided applications for the science review work groups to SBOE members on a monthly basis from December 2019 to June 2020 and in September, October, and December 2020. At the January 2020 SBOE meeting, the SBOE provided specific guidance for the TEKS review work groups.

Also in January 2020, science TEKS review content advisors met in a face-to-face meeting to develop consensus recommendations regarding revisions to the science TEKS to share with future work groups. At that time, the content advisors met with representatives from Work Group A to discuss the consensus recommendations. Work Group A convened in February 2020 to review survey results, content advisor consensus recommendations, and the SBOE's guidance to work groups to develop recommendations for how science TEKS review work groups can address these areas. Work Group B was convened virtually in June 2020 to develop recommendations for four high school science courses: Biology, Chemistry, Integrated Physics and Chemistry, and Physics. In November 2020, the SBOE approved for second reading and final adoption proposed new 19 TAC §§112.41-112.45 for implementation beginning in the 2023-2024 school year.

Work Group C convened for a series of virtual meetings between August and November 2020 to develop recommendations for the middle school science TEKS. Work Group D was convened for monthly meetings from November 2020-February 2021 to develop recommendations for TEKS for five high school science courses: Aquatic Science, Astronomy, Earth and Space Science, Environmental Systems, and a new course Specialized Topics in Science. In January 2021, a discussion item was presented to the committee for proposed new 19 TAC §§112.47-112.51. Work Group E was convened for monthly meetings between January and March 2021 to develop recommendations for the elementary science TEKS.

Recommendations for TEKS in a new course called Specialized Topics in Science were developed by Work Group D. The new course, which will give students the opportunity to study specific topics of interest in science in greater depth or to study topics not addressed in other science courses, has been recommended for implementation earlier than the 2023-2024 school year so that students studying specialized topics will have alternative ways to fulfill their graduation requirements in science. This course is recommended for implementation beginning with the 2021-2022 school year.

The proposed new sections would introduce new standards for Specialized Topics in Science and revised standards for Aquatic Science, Astronomy, Earth Science Systems (formerly titled Earth and Space Science), and Environmental Systems as well as related implementation language.

A public hearing on proposed new 19 TAC §§112.47-112.51 is presented as a separate item in this agenda.

A public hearing on proposed new 19 TAC §§112.2-112.7 and §§112.26-112.28 is presented as a separate item in this agenda.

Proposed new 19 TAC §§112.2-112.7 and §§112.26-112.28 is presented for discussion as a separate item in this agenda.

FISCAL IMPACT: TEA has determined that for the first five years the proposal is in effect (2021-2025), there are no fiscal implications to the state. However, in fiscal years 2019 and 2020, there was a fiscal impact to TEA to reimburse committee members for travel to review the science TEKS. For fiscal year 2020, the estimated cost to TEA was $23,609. There will also be implications for the TEA if the state develops professional development to help teachers and administrators understand the revised TEKS. Any professional development that is created would be based on whether the TEA received an appropriation for professional development in the next biennium.

There may be fiscal implications for school districts and charter schools to implement the proposed revisions to the TEKS, which may include the need for professional development and revisions to district-developed databases, curriculum, and scope and sequence documents. Since curriculum and instruction decisions are made at the local district level, it is difficult to estimate the fiscal impact on any given district.

LOCAL EMPLOYMENT IMPACT: The proposal has no effect on local economy; therefore, no local employment impact statement is required under Texas Government Code, §2001.022.

SMALL BUSINESS, MICROBUSINESS, AND RURAL COMMUNITY IMPACT: The proposal has no direct adverse economic impact for small businesses, microbusinesses, or rural communities; therefore, no regulatory flexibility analysis specified in Texas Government Code, §2006.002, is required.

COST INCREASE TO REGULATED PERSONS: The proposal does not impose a cost on regulated persons, another state agency, a special district, or a local government and, therefore, is not subject to Texas Government Code, §2001.0045.

TAKINGS IMPACT ASSESSMENT: The proposal does not impose a burden on private real property and, therefore, does not constitute a taking under Texas Government Code, §2007.043.

GOVERNMENT GROWTH IMPACT: TEA staff prepared a Government Growth Impact Statement assessment for this proposed rulemaking. During the first five years the proposed rulemaking would be in effect, it would create new regulations by proposing revised science TEKS required to be offered by school districts and charter schools.

The proposed rulemaking would not create or eliminate a government program; would not require the creation of new employee positions or elimination of existing employee positions; would not require an increase or decrease in future legislative appropriations to the agency; would not require an increase or decrease in fees paid to the agency; would not expand, limit, or repeal an existing regulation; would not increase or decrease the number of individuals subject to its applicability; and would not positively or adversely affect the state's economy.

PUBLIC BENEFIT AND COST TO PERSONS: The proposal would better align the TEKS and coordinate the standards with the adoption of instructional materials. There is no anticipated economic cost to persons who are required to comply with the proposal.

DATA AND REPORTING IMPACT: The proposal would have no data and reporting impact.

PRINCIPAL AND CLASSROOM TEACHER PAPERWORK REQUIREMENTS: TEA has determined that the proposal would not require a written report or other paperwork to be completed by a principal or classroom teacher.

PUBLIC COMMENTS: The public comment period on the proposal begins May 14, 2021, and ends at 5:00 p.m. on June 18, 2021. The SBOE will take registered oral and written comments on the proposal at the appropriate committee meeting in June 2021 in accordance with the SBOE board operating policies and procedures. A request for a public hearing on the proposal submitted under the Administrative Procedure Act must be received by the commissioner of education not more than 14 calendar days after notice of the proposal has been published in the Texas Register on May 14, 2021.

MOTION TO BE CONSIDERED: The State Board of Education:

Approve for first reading and filing authorization proposed new 19 TAC Chapter 112, Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Science, Subchapter C, High School, §112.46, Implementation of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Science, High School, Adopted 2021; §112.47, Aquatic Science, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); §112.48, Astronomy, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); §112.49, Earth Science Systems, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); §112.50, Environmental Systems, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); and §112.51, Specialized Topics in Science, Adopted 2021 (One Credit).

Staff Members Responsible:
Monica Martinez, Associate Commissioner, Standards and Support Services
Shelly Ramos, Senior Director, Curriculum Standards and Student Support

Attachment:
Text of Proposed New 19 TAC Chapter 112, Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Science, Subchapter C, High School, §112.46, Implementation of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Science, High School, Adopted 2021; §112.47, Aquatic Science, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); §112.48, Astronomy, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); §112.49, Earth Science Systems, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); §112.50, Environmental Systems, Adopted 2021 (One Credit); and §112.51, Specialized Topics in Science, Adopted 2021 (One Credit)