District of Innovation Process

 

The district of innovation concept was passed into law in 2015 when the 84th Texas Legislature created Texas Education Code (TEC) chapter 12A, Districts of Innovation. An innovation plan allows a school district to establish local control through exemptions from various Texas Education Code (TEC) requirements. Seguin ISD is focused on gaining exemptions in the areas of educator certification and school start date.

 

ALLOW ALTERNATIVES TO EDUCATOR CERTIFICATION

 

Innovation: Educator certification alternatives may increase the number of dual credit and Career and Technical Education (CTE) courses offered at the secondary level. This change may allow students more opportunities to receive college credit and/or industry certifications while in high school.

 

Requirement: Texas Education Code § 21.051 provides that before a school district may employ a candidate for certification as a teacher of record, the candidate must complete at least 15 hours of field-based experience in which the candidate is actively engaged in instructional or educational activities. Teacher certification for Career and Technical Education Instructors; TEC § 21.003 CERTIFICATION REQUIRED. (a) A person may not be employed as a teacher, teacher intern or teacher trainee, librarian, or school counselor by a school district unless the person holds an appropriate certificate or permit issued as provided by Subchapter B.

 

Local control advantages:

  • Flexibility in recruiting and hiring teachers from the field, including experienced individuals from unique trades or vocations, may lead to more dual credit and/or industry certification opportunities for students enrolled in Career and Technology Education (CTE) courses.

 

  • This initiative will allow for the potential to offer additional languages and dual credit courses by employing college instructors, university professors, or retired part-time teachers.

 

DETERMINE A FLEXIBLE SCHOOL START DATE

 

Innovation: A flexible start date would allow Seguin ISD many options which may positively impact student learning and growth. An earlier start date would allow for balanced semesters, innovative and timely summer programs to provide enrichment and intervention, and targeted professional development and school transition opportunities.

 

Requirement: Texas Education Code §25.0811 states that a school district may not begin instruction prior to the fourth Monday in August.

 

Local control advantages:

  • Balanced instructional time in the first and second semesters may improve the ability to implement special programs at various schools.

  • The alignment of the calendar with colleges and universities may allow for quality pacing of instruction, assessment, and intervention to support college, career or military readiness. In addition, students will have the ability to participate in summer college camps and courses.

  • Timely professional development may positively impact student learning.

  • A flexible start provides options for quality enrichment and intervention programs that may limit the loss of knowledge gained during the previous year.

  • A shortened week at the beginning of the school year may ease the transition to a new campus for kindergarten, middle school, and high school students.


 

AF(LEGAL) Innovation Districts

posted 2/23/18