Prior to the 2013 legislative session, superintendents, trustees, parents, and various business groups, among others were asking state leaders and legislators to reduce the number of required state assessments and provide more flexibility in graduation plans. HB5 provided for both.
HB 5 also included a local evaluation requirement that is frequently referred to as the community engagement component. The community engagement requirement is an opportunity for districts to showcase areas of excellence and success as well as recognize areas in need of improvement and set future goals valued in the community.
The statute requires each district to evaluate and designate a performance rating for the district and each of its campuses in the district based on criteria set by a local committee (TEC 39.0545). The law requires that each district and each campus be assigned a rating of exemplary, recognized, acceptable, or unacceptable. The district and campus performance ratings must be reported annually to TEA through PEIMS, and made publicly available by August 8 of each year beginning with the 2013–14 school year.
The statute provides nine factors for which the district and each campus must be evaluated:
1. Fine arts
2. Wellness and physical education
3. Community and parental involvement
4. 21st century workforce development program
5. 2nd language acquisition program
6. Digital learning environment
7. Dropout prevention strategies
8. Educational programs for GT students
9. Compliance with statutory reporting and policy requirements.