TLA TEXLINE NO. 249
Posted: May 21, 2009 • LEGISLATIVE ISSUES NETWORK


In this issue:
CALL TO ACTION on HB 3 – Conferees Named


HB 3 relates to accountability and promotion requirements for public schools. During the House floor passage of the bill, Reps. Rose and Bonnen added an amendment to allow TEA to study the option of including school library services as a factor for campus distinction designation. The Senate version does not include this language. The Texas House has named its representatives for the HB 3 Conference Committee, which will negotiate differences with the Senate version of the bill. The Senate is expected to name its conferees shortly.

URGENT CALL TO ACTION: If your senator or representative serves on the HB 3 Conference Committee, please contact their office as soon as possible with the following message.

The message:

Please accept the House language for HB 3 on Sec. 39.203 (a) that would allow TEA to conduct a feasibility study on the potential inclusion of library services for campus distinction designation. In a TEA and State Library study completed last fall on school library programs, the agencies found that TEA should engage in a discussion with the education community on school library standards and using those standards as a basis to “document progress in providing quality library programs.”

According to this TEA/TSLAC study: “Public school library programs increase student ability to learn and provide a more successful learning environment. School libraries support core curriculum areas, enabling students to achieve their potential and fully participate now and in the future in the social, economic, and educational opportunities of our state, nation, and world.”

By including House Section 39.203 (a), the Legislature gives TEA the opportunity to study the role of school libraries in supporting the highest standards of education.

Sec.39.203. STUDY REGARDING ADDITIONAL CATEGORIES FOR
DISTINCTION DESIGNATION. (a) The agency shall conduct a study on the
feasibility and appropriateness of including additional categories of performance
for a distinction designation under Section 39.201(d), including library services
and the campus learning environment.

The Senate Conferees

The House Conferees