HBA-NLM H.B. 1241 76(R) BILL ANALYSIS Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 1241 By: Grusendorf Public Education 4/20/1999 Introduced BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Currently, students must pass the 10th grade exit-level Texas Assessment of Academic Skills (TAAS) covering various subjects in order to graduate from high school. TAAS measures a student's progress toward certain academic goals of the state. Businesses and institutions of higher education have requested the state to administer an exit-level exam with a broader content in order to measure the core academic skills needed to succeed in higher education and the workplace. H.B. 1241 requires the Texas Education Agency to adopt secondary exit-level assessments designed to be administered to students in grade 11 to assess social studies and science. In addition, this bill provides that the assessment instruments must assess a student's mastery of minimum skills necessary for high school graduation and readiness to enroll in an institution of higher education or enter the workforce. RULEMAKING AUTHORITY It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that rulemaking authority is expressly delegated to the commissioner of education in SECTION 8 of this bill. SECTION BY SECTION ANALYSIS SECTION 1. Amends Section 28.025(a), Education Code, to authorize a student to graduate and receive a diploma only if the student complies with Section 39.025(a) (requiring satisfactory performance or assessment instruments for English language arts and mathematics) or the student successfully completes an individualized education program developed under Section 29.005 (Individualized Education Program). Deletes text relating to the exit level assessment administered under Section 39.023. Makes nonsubstantive changes. SECTION 2. Amends Sections 39.023(a), (c), and (e), Education Code, as follows: (a) Sets forth required assessment instruments designed to assess students' competencies in certain subjects at various grade levels. (c) Requires the Texas Education Agency (TEA) to adopt secondary exit-level assessments designed to be administered to students in grade 11 to assess social studies and science. Provides that the assessment instruments must assess a student's mastery of minimum skills necessary for high school graduation and readiness to enroll in an institution of higher education or enter the workforce. Requires the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (board) to assist TEA in determining skills necessary for readiness to enroll in a higher education institution. Exempts students who perform at or above the level established by the board on the secondary exit-level assessment instruments from the requirements of Section 51.306 (Texas Academic Skills Program). Deletes text relating to the determination by the State Board of Education of an appropriate grade level. (e) Deletes text relating to the release of questions and answer keys to an assessment instrument administered under Subsection (d). Makes conforming and nonsubstantive changes. SECTION 3. Amends Section 39.025(a), Education Code, to delete text relating to specified course assessment instruments. Makes conforming changes. SECTION 4. Amends Section 39.051(b), Education Code, to delete text relating to the percentage of students taking end-of-course assessment instruments. Makes a conforming change. SECTION 5. Amends Section 39.052(b), Education Code, to make conforming changes . SECTION 6. Repealer: Section 39.023(d) (regarding allowable modifications of assessment exams for special education students and exemption of exam for students) and Section 39.023(j) (regarding expiration date of subsection), Education Code. SECTION 7. Effective date: September 1, 1999. SECTION 8. Requires the commissioner of education to adopt rules that set forth the implementation of Section 39.023, Education Code. Sets forth requirements for the commissioner's rules. SECTION 9. Emergency clause.