With Texas approaching the 83rd Legislative Session in January, the debate around the state’s educational accountability system – including the elevated testing requirements and high-stakes of the STAAR program – has been rapidly intensifying. This escalation is reflected in the increasingly polarized tone of stakeholders’ statements at press conferences, on education blogs, and in newspaper articles. Despite shared goals for students such as closing the gaps in achievement and improving readiness for life after high school, opponents disagree, often vehemently, on how to reach those goals. Preserve the STAAR system as it is? Make minor adjustments to certain components of the program? Pursue a more fundamental restructuring of the state’s educational accountability system?
To bring these stakeholders together in a nonpartisan setting and give the public an opportunity to hear and discuss the evidence for these policy options, the LBJ School of Public Affairs will host a forum on September 24, titled “Measuring Up: A Statewide Conversation on High-Stakes Testing & Accountability.”
The forum will feature a roundtable of experts from academia, state government, and the private and non-profit sectors. Panelists include:
- David Anthony of Raise Your Hand Texas and formerly of the Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District;
- Texas State Representative Jimmie Don Aycock;
- Linda McNeil of Rice University;
- Commissioner Tom Pauken from the Texas Workforce Commission;
- Angela Valenzuela of The University of Texas at Austin; and
- Todd Williams of Commit! and formerly of Goldman Sachs.
Carolyn Heinrich, director of the LBJ School’s Center for Health and Social Policy, will moderate the forum.
The roundtable discussion will start at 7 p.m. in the Lady Bird Johnson Auditorium, followed by a Q&A session with the audience beginning around 7:45 p.m. At 8:30 p.m., all attendees are invited upstairs to a networking reception in the LBJ School Front Lobby that will run until 9:30 p.m. Limited complimentary parking will be available in the Thompson Conference Center lot (Lot 40) on the southwest corner of Dean Keeton and Red River. Overflow paid parking will be available in the Manor Garage at the corner of Clyde Littlefield and Robert Dedman Drive.
The event is co-sponsored by The University of Texas at Austin’s Center for Health and Social Policy, Texas Center for Education Policy, Institute for Urban Policy Research & Analysis, and Center for Mexican American Studies.
Questions? Please contact Julie Montgomery at the Center for Health and Social Policy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
When & Where
The LBJ School of Public Affairs
About the LBJ School
Since our founding in 1970, the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin has built a proud tradition of public service and cutting edge research on the most important public policy challenges of our time. The School's mission is to develop leaders and ideas that will help our state, the nation and the international community address critical public policy challenges in an increasingly interconnected and interdependent world. Drawing upon a world-renowned, multidisciplinary faculty, a diverse and talented group of masters and Ph.D. students and the resources of the University of Texas at Austin, one of the world's leading research universities, the LBJ School is well-placed to help shape public policy for the 21st century. We are truly at the intersection of knowledge and action.