Texas Lobbying News
The following is a public document available at the Texas Senate website. The Texas Lobby Group is posting it here as a public service for Lobbyists, Texas lobbying firms, Texas Government Consultants, Texas Political advisors, and other interested parties.
Interim Charges Relating to Public Education
The Lieutenant Governor today released the following interim charges:
Study public school management practices, including the use and options for shared services for both academics and operations. Examine the role of Regional Education Service Centers. Specifically, review the types of services being provided and their ability to assist school districts with improving efficiencies.
Study educator and principal preparation programs through colleges of education and alternative certification. Make recommendations to improve these programs. Examine strategies to improve recruitment of high-quality teachers. Examine alternative approaches to improving teacher retention. Study the benefits of comprehensive induction and mentoring programs.
Study the growing demand for virtual schools in Texas. Review the benefits of virtual schools, related successes in other states, and needed changes to remove barriers to virtual schools.
Study the impact of extended learning time on school success. Evaluate the different programs offered, best practices, school implementation, and incentives for building community partnerships that allow a variety of academic and career-related learning opportunities. Examine the effect of after-school programs on academic performance, school attendance, behavior, and promotion to the next grade level, and the relationship between the availability of after-school programs in an area and the high school dropout rate.
Study the performance and accountability of charter schools, best practices of high- performing charter schools, and barriers to replication. Review policies and practices for authorizing high-quality charters and closing poorperforming charters. Study the benefits of and costs related to increasing the number of charters, as well as establishing additional authorization boards to grant new charters.
Study the impact of school choice programs in other states on students, parents, and teachers. Explore the use of education tax credits and taxpayer savings grants, and examine potential impacts on state funding.02/29/2012
Conduct a comprehensive review of school discipline practices. Specifically, review and make recommendations on:
- The effectiveness of Disciplinary Alternative Education Programs (DAEP) and Juvenile Justice Alternative Education Programs (JJAEP) in reducing student involvement in further disciplinary infractions and in promoting positive educational achievement;
- Disproportionate school discipline referrals, including suspension, expulsion, and Class C misdemeanor citations;
- The issue of “Zero Tolerance” in secondary education school discipline, the use of alternative education campuses, and the barriers to graduation. Also include the role that specialized school police departments play in these systems. Consider the impact on the juvenile justice system and the adult prison system;
- The number of students in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) referred to juvenile or municipal courts, suspended, expelled, and placed in Disciplinary Alternative Education Programs (DAEP). Examine data-sharing practices between DFPS, TEA, and local education agencies, and make recommendations to increase communication between schools and DFPS to increase educational outcomes for children in foster care;o Evidence based models used for addressing juvenile delinquency prevention that is targeted to non-adjudicated, but at-risk youth, in the school disciplinary system. (Joint Charge with Senate Committee on Criminal Justice)
Monitor the implementation of legislation addressed by the Senate Committee on Education, 82nd Legislature, Regular and Called Sessions, and make recommendations for any legislation needed to improve, enhance, and/or complete implementation. Specifically, monitor the following:
- SB 6, relating to the establishment of the instructional materials allotment;
- SB 8, relating to the flexibility of the board of trustee of a school district in the management and operation of public schools;
- HB 1942, relating to bullying in public schools;
- The implementation of legislation related to the state’s accountability system and other reforms enacted by HB 3, 81st Legislature, Regular Session, and SB 1031, 80th Legislature, Regular Session.
The Texas Lobby Group is a full service lobbying and government relations firm that continues to earn incredible stature throughout the state lobby industry. Through our contacts with Texas’ public policy makers, we provide a turn-key legislative advocacy approach. Our services include legislative lobbying, administrative lobbying, strategy development, grassroots development and mobilization, internal and external communications, and political strategy, advice and counsel.
Partners Lara Keel, Bill Messer and Mike Toomey are all at the top of the game. Both Mike Toomey and Bill Messer have been named “Number one hired gun lobbyist” by “Capitol Inside” and by Texas Monthly magazine as two of only 4 lobbyists listed in the “top 25 most influential people in Texas politics.” Lara Laneri Keel was named a “top five lobby star to watch” by Capitol Inside’s Texas Lobby Power Rankings two years in a row. Recently Mrs. Keel was named the top female hired gun lobbyist in Capitol Inside’s Texas Lobby Power Rankings.
Since it’s forming in 2002, the group’s client portfolio has grown to include an impressive list of Fortune 500 companies including: Liberty Mutual, AT & T, UnitedHealth Group, and Texas Instruments, as well as other companies, associations and government entities.
Read more at the Texas Lobby Group Website.