Taking the Bat Out of The BOE’s Hands in Texas

by Robert Pondiscio
April 14th, 2009

Texas state legislators have apparently had enough of the endless arguments over evolution and other charged topics that regularly put the state’s Board of Education in the national spotlight.  The Wall Street Journal reports they are considering stripping the Board of its authority to set curricula and approve textbooks. 

While the science standards have drawn the most attention, the 15-member elected board has been embroiled in other controversies as well. Last year, it rejected a reading curriculum that teachers had spent nearly three years drafting. In its place, the board approved a document that a few members hastily assembled just hours before the vote.

Various proposals being drawn up in Texas would transfer curriculum oversight and textbook adoptions to the state education agency, a legislative board or the commissioner of education. “Other bills would transform the board to an appointed rather than elected body, require Webcasting of meetings, and take away the board’s control of a vast pot of school funding,” the Journal reports.

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