Texas Center for Education Policy Hosts Educational Reform Conference, Feb. 9

The Texas Center for Education Policy (TCEP) will host its annual state conference, "Leading the Nation: A Texas Retrospective on Educational Reform" on Feb. 9 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Austin Hilton downtown.

"This conference provides the opportunity for a statewide audience to hear from educational experts and leaders and to engage in discussion about the importance of investing in our youth and communities," said Dr. Angela Valenzuela, director of the TCEP. "Certainly, there are multiple points and perspectives to consider and this conference provides a space to reflect on how far we have come and the challenges that lay ahead."

The public event will convene thought leaders from the education, government, business, community and nonprofit sectors with an interest in issues of accountability and assessment to identify areas where reform has a significant impact on education.

Paul Sadler, former chair of the Committee on Public Education, Texas House of Representatives will deliver the luncheon keynote. He will be followed by David Hinojosa of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, who will discuss education for English language learners in Texas.

Speakers in the morning panel "Reflections on Ten Years of 'Texas-style' Accountability" include:

  • Albert Kauffman, associate professor of law, St. Mary's School of Law, San Antonio
  • Linda McNeil, professor, Department of Education, Rice University, Houston
  • Richard Valencia, professor, Department of Educational Psychology, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Angela Valenzuela, professor, Department of Educational Administration and Department of Curriculum and Instruction and director, Texas Center for Education Policy

Speakers in an afternoon panel titled "Contemporary Issues in Education Reform in Texas" are:

  • Senator Florence Shapiro, chair, Senate Education Committee, Texas Senate
  • Representative Rob Eissler, chair, Committee on Public Education, Texas House
  • Representative Paul Sadler, former chair, Committee on Public Education, Texas House

There is a $30 conference fee. A light breakfast and lunch will be provided. For more information, contact Dr. Valenzuela at 512-471-7055. Seating is limited so call or email to reserve a seat: 512-471-7055; email: tcep@austin.utexas.edu.

The conference is sponsored by the TCEP and the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at the University of Texas at Austin, in partnership with Aztec Worldwide.

About the Texas Center for Education Policy:

Since its inception in 2005, the TCEP at The University of Texas at Austin has been an active, authoritative voice in the Texas State Legislature. TCEP uses research to advocate for high-quality education for all, in particular, historically disadvantaged students in Texas public schools. A significant achievement involves a revision to the Texas Education Code that removes the reliance on high-stakes tests as the sole criterion for decisions pertaining to grade promotion and retention, positively affecting third-grade children in Texas public schools this year. Such decisions will now be based on such factors as grades, attendance, classroom performance, teacher assessment, parent input and test performance.

Continuing efforts include convening groups for the discussion of policy, writing policy and research briefs, conducting original research, providing recommendations and advising on proposed education legislation and policy at local, state, national and international levels. TCEP is part of the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement portfolio at The University of Texas at Austin.