August 2017, Vol. 2

HR Extras

Majority of new science educators teach courses outside expertise

A recent survey conducted by researchers from the University of Georgia found nearly two-thirds of new science educators taught at least one course outside their subject area expertise in their first five years in the classroom.
 
Roughly 40 percent of those teachers taught mostly or entirely outside their field during that period. Additionally, the researchers found out-of-field teaching was more common in rural and urban schools, as well as schools with high numbers of students learning the English language.
 
The survey was completed by 137 teachers who taught in secondary schools in the Southwest and the Midwest regions of the country. The researchers followed the teachers for the first five years of their careers and tracked the courses they taught, among other details. To view the full survey, visit ResearchGate.net.

Texas ESSA plan public commentary period ends soon

The public commentary period for the draft Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) consolidated state plan expires next Tuesday, August 29.

According to a press release from the TEA, some of the highlights of the plan include:
  • Alignment of state and federal policies – specifically in the areas of accountability and school improvement.
  • Maximizing flexibility afforded Texas school districts to provide services needed for students.
  • Strengthening the state’s commitment and support for our most vulnerable populations (including migrant, foster care, homeless, and economically disadvantaged students).
  • Reinforcing the state’s commitment to the 60x30 plan (developed by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board) by aligning long-term academic goals to having 60 percent of students prepared to earn a certificate or degree by the year 2030.
To download the plan and submit ideas and feedback, visit the TEA website. TEA will submit the state’s final plan to the U.S. Department of Education in September.