SBOE to meet May 10 to adopt updated language arts and reading standards

The State Board of Education will hold a special called meeting on May 10 to consider final approval of changes to the English and Spanish language arts and reading curriculum standards for kindergarten through eighth grade.

Final approval for the high school English and Spanish language arts and reading Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) will be considered at the June 20-23 board meeting.

The language arts and reading standards were amended during the April meeting and many of those amendments can be found at http://bit.ly/2oYHn1o.

The final adoption of the elementary and middle school was postponed until May to give the board and Texas Agency staff time to ensure that the amendments have been accurately incorporated before adoption. The two-and-a-half week delay will not affect the call for bids for instructional material. In addition, the delay will not extend the public comment period.

The most significant changes to the proposed TEKS involve creating a better alignment between the English and Spanish language arts standards and reorganizing the TEKS into seven strands.

The strands are:

  • Developing and sustaining foundational language skills: listening, speaking and discussion
  • Comprehension skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing using multiple texts
  • Response skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing using multiple texts
  • Multiple Genres: listening, speaking, reading, and writing using multiple texts
  • Author’s craft: listening, speaking, reading and writing using multiple texts
  • Composition: listening, speaking, reading and writing using multiple texts
  • Inquiry and research: listening, speaking, reading and writing using multiple texts.

 
The proposed standards create a new course called English Language Development and Acquisition, which will provide instructional opportunities for recent immigrant students who have with little or no English proficiency and are attending secondary schools. It is recommended to be taking concurrently with English I for Speakers of Other Languages or English II for Speakers of Other Languages.

These changes mark the first update to the language arts and reading standards since 2011.

The revisions were proposed after gathering extensive public input from educator review panels, higher education professors, English and Spanish language arts experts, an online forum, and written and oral public comments.

This marked the first time that the board has formally asked college professors who teach freshmen English courses to review the incorporation of the college readiness standards in the TEKS for high school courses.
 
Once the amendments approved in April are incorporated into the draft TEKS, the English and Spanish proposals will be posted on the TEA website.