Texas Education Agency
Science Education Update
TSELA Spring
Conference 2006
Austin, Texas
Chris Castillo Comer
Director of Science
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C. Comer
Science TAKS TESTING




Science TAKS was not be the last test administered;
Grade 8 students again took innovative online testing;
All Tests will be released this year;
Item analysis will be available; Data will include all
tests except TAKS-I which will be phased-in next year
in the TAKS scores;
 NCLB study will be done to judge TAKS alignment
 Three new tests will be developed for Science at the
High School Level: Biology, Chemistry and Physics!
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
STATE of TEXAS
Grade 5 Science TAKS
2003
%
Met Standard
%
Commended
Average
Scale Score
4/26/06
2004
2005
’03 all
’04 all
’05 all
74% 69% 64% 70% 72% 66%
4%
16% 26%
1940 2016 2100
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Study Guides
are provided to
students who do
not meet the
standard.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
SBOE News…
 Fourth credit of science was discussed at last
board meeting in the form of Engineering which
will now move to 2nd reading at this weeks SBOE
meeting
 Textbook adoptions
 Bilingual Education
 Language Arts TEKS
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Texas Schools Respond to
Hurricanes and Evacuees
 At its peak, Texas Schools enrolled 46,504
Hurricane Katrina evacuees, while about 400,000
Texas students were displaced and their schools
shuttered temporarily
 When Hurricane Rita rolled ashore, knocking
essential services to a wide swath of Southeast
and East Texas.
 TEA continues to monitor various efforts in
Congress to provide funding to cover costs
incurred by districts because of Katrina and Rita.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Latest
demographics
Show increases…
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Science
Education
In the
News…
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C. Comer
The cost of NOT having an
education…
 25% of the state’s residents aged 25 and older lack a
high school education;
 Each year another 45,000-50,000 students drop out
of Texas public schools costing the state 11.4 billion
in lost gross state product (GSP)
 AND…
 Dropouts cost the state and federal governments
$1.4 billion annually in social costs;
 Are six times more likely to be incarcerated and
 2.7-3.7 times more likely to receive public assistance
http://window.state.tx.us/specialrpt/teachersalary04
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
President Bush and Science
Education
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
President Bush’s Address
$910 Million for NSF, Dept. of Energy Commerce Department
Specialty schools for math and science
•Experiential-based Learning Opportunities
•National Labs for PD
•Scholarships, Fellowships, Summer
Institutes
In science and math for students and
teachers
NASA
•Development of Science Parks similar
to Asian Parks
Download report at: http://www.nap.edu
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
State Curriculum Trends
 Emphasis on science at very early ages
 At-risk students identified earlier and more
programs to support students in credit recovery
 More High Schools with dropout recovery
programs specializing in technical
school/employment training
 Emphasis on higher expectations and more
science to prepare students for technical training
 Greater high school to college coordination
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
GOVERNOR PERRY ANNOUNCES
T-STEM ACADEMIES!
$71 Million committed to Texas Science, Technology,
Engineering, And Mathematics (T-STEM) Academies
Part of Texas High School Project:
Will establish 35 small schools
that will offer focused opportunities
in STEM related curriculum
Funded in part with Gates and Dell
contributions
Dana Center named first of six
centers for Educator Professional
Development in STEM
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
National Trends in
High School Science
 In 2004, five states of 30 reporting, had more than 30% of
students take Physics by graduation including Texas
 Chemistry Enrollments increased; 10 states that more than
60% of their students take Chemistry by graduation,
including Texas
 Significant increases in high schools science courses; in
’04 60%; compared to 55% in ‘96 and 45% in ’90
 Certified Science Teachers continue to be in high demand.
http://www.ccsso.org/project/science_and_mathematics_ Education_Indicators
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
State Policies in Relation to
Math and Science Enrollments
As of 2004:
 21 states require 3 high school course credits of mathematics and
6 require four credits;
 20 states require 3 credits of science and 3 require four credits
 In the 1990’s and continuing since 2000, over 40 states raised the
number of credits required for graduation in science and
mathematics, and recently additional requirements have een
added. In total 42 states now require at least two years of math
and science and a majority three or more), while in the mid-1980’s
only nine states had even this requirement.
 As of 1992, only 13 states required 3 or more credits of math and
six states required 3 or more credits in science.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Middle School Science
Courses
 The Science courses and curriculum taught in grades 7-8
vary widely across the states.
 States have taken different approaches to structuring the
middle grades science curriculum. The national averages
show that 47% of grades 7 and 8 students took a General
Science course, which represents an increase since 1996.
 Life Science was the course taken by 14% of students,
which indicates a decline over eight years.
 Earth Science courses in the middle grades included an
average of 13% of students, and Physical Science included
10%.
 Integrated or Coordinated Science has the highest
percentage of grade 7-8 science enrollments in six states.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Higher-Level Mathematics and
Science for Minority Students
 For 2003-04, 15 states reported course enrollments
by student race/ethnic group. African American
and Hispanic student enrollments continue to lag
behind enrollments for whites and Asians in most
states.
 The states of North Carolina, Texas, and Utah show
the greatest gains for African American students in
higher level math and science enrollments. Gains
for Hispanic students were highest in Texas and
Utah.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Number of Texas
Science Teachers
Grades 9-12: 2004
Course
Number
Certified
Physical Science
Biology
Chemistry
Physics
Earth Science
Other Sciences
4,586
5,381
3,179
1,694
485
1,250
No data
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
74%
78%
79%
56%
No data
C.Comer
Texas Teacher Profiles
 First year teachers: 7% of Texas teachers=
 22,649 teachers;
 Teachers 1-5 years experience: 28.7%;
equals
 84, 482 teachers;
 Total novice teachers: 36.4% MORE THAN
A THIRD of ALL TEXAS TEACHERS
 Another 20% may be ready to leave
teaching (20+ years)
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Texas Ranks Ninth in Class
Size: Quality Counts 2006 ranked Texas in
a number of categories. Here are a few:
Where Texas Ranks:
 Texas National Average Rank Education spending
per student adjusted for regional cost differences
(2002)
 $7,183 $7,73438
 Average class size for self-contained classes in
elementary schools (2000)
 18.5 21.29
 Education Counts.
For more, see: http://www.edweek.org/ew/states/tx/
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Texas Ranks 33rd in the Country in
Average Teacher Salary;
40th in Education Spending per Student
 Average teacher salaries rose 1.3% in Texas from 2003–
2004 to 2004–2005, which moved Texas down from 32nd to
33rd nationwide.
 Spending per student fell 1.0% in Texas from 2003–2004 to
2004–2005. That resulted in Texas falling from 36th to 40th
nationwide, out of the 50 states and the District of
Columbia.
 Spending rose 4.4%, or 3.7% per student, on average
nationwide.
For more rankings and data, see:
http://www.nea.org/edstats/images/05rankings-update.pdf
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Secondary Student Performance
vs. Teacher Profiles
STUDENT PERFORMANCE
TEACHER PROFILES
%Students
completing
High School
%Students
Passing
TAKS
% Teachers
leaving
<95%
23.6%
20.6%
%Teachers
teaching
outside their
field
31.2%
95-97.99%
33.8%
20.0%
28.6%
98-100%
44.9%
19.3%
27.9%
Source: Completion and TAKS data from TEA; AEIS ’02-’03; Teacher Data
From State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) , AEIS ’02-’03 and ’03-’04
http://www.widow.state.tx.us/specialrpt/teachersalary04/
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Texas Teacher Turnover and
Student Performance
% Teachers
leaving
campuses
0-10%
% Students
passing TAKS
53.6%
% Texas
Students
Impacted
11.2%
11-20%
48.9%
45.3%
21-30%
46.0%
29.8%
More than 30%
44.3%
13.7%
State Average
47.9%
Source: State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) and TEA, AEIS ’02-’03
http://www.widow.state.tx.us/specialrpt/teachersalary04/
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Teacher Experience
vs. TAKS Performance
Average Level of Teacher
Experience per Campus
% of Students Passing
TAKS
0 to 5 Years
37%
6-10 Years
48%
11-15 Years
48%
16-20 Years
48%
Over 20 Years
49%
Source: State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) and TEA, AEIS ’02-’03
http://www.widow.state.tx.us/specialrpt/teachersalary04/
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Texas Teachers Teaching
Outside Their Field and Student
Performance
Teachers
teaching outside
of field
0-10%
11-20%
21-30%
More that 30%
%Students
Passing TAKS
State Average
47.9%
61.%
51.8%
43.6%
36.9%
% Texas
Students
Impacted
22.2%
26.2%
26.7%
24.9%
Source: State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) and TEA, AEIS ’02-’03
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
TIMSS:
Trends in Mathematics and Science Study
Nations' Average Science Performance
Compared with the U.S.
100%
50%
0%
Grade 4
Grade 8
Grade 12
Nations scoring higher than the U.S.
Nations scoring the same as the U.S.
Nations scoring below the U.S.
TIMSS 2007 will begin within the next few weeks.
Schools chosen will receive TIMSS Kits for 4th and
8th grade math and science.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
Source: NCES 2003-081R, Highlights From TIMSS
C.Comer
What is TIMSS?
 Measures the mathematics and science learning of
fourth and eighth graders
 Monitors this learning in fourth and eighth graders;
 Compares the mathematics and science knowledge
of students across some 60 nations;
 Operates on a 4-year cycle—1995, 1999, 2003, 2007
 Emphasizes the measurement of mathematics and
science learning in each cycle; and
 Is exploring the measurement of problem solving
as a skill in its own right.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
School Districts Involved:
Students in 63 countries, will participate
In Texas, 35 Independent School Districts have been
asked for sample schools to be involved in the
2007 TIMSS study: Aldine, Arlington, Austin,
Bryan, Buna, Clint, Conroe, Corpus Christi,
Cypress-Fairbanks, Dallas, Eagle Mt. Saginaw,
Eagle pass, Edinburgh, Forney, Ft. Worth, Garland,
Gonzalez, Grand Prairie, Harlandale, Highland
Park, Houston, Iola, Irving, Keller, Klein, Lufkin,
Marion, Mission Cons, North East, Poolville,
Somerville, Splendora, Sulphur Springs, White
Settlement
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Participating Schools will
receive:
 Teacher Resource Kits with a collection of
background material and books relating to 4th and
8th grade math and science
 Participating schools will also receive a printerscanner-copier-fax free of charge
 Please feel free to contact TIMSS with any
questions via e-mail at [email protected] or
by calling the TIMSS hotline at 1-888-677-1490
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
th
8
Examples of actual
grade
math and science items ‘07
When Tracy left for school, the temperature was minus
3 degrees. At recess, the temperature was five
degrees. How many degrees did the temperature
rise?
A. 2 degrees
B. 3 degrees
C. 5 degrees
D. 8 degrees
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
th
8
Examples of actual
grade
math and science items ‘07
Animals hibernate to survive cold weather and
poor food supplies. Which of the following
occurs in animals when they hibernate?



A.
4/26/06
Their body temperatures increase.
Their body fat remains constant.
Their blood stops circulating.
Their rate of metabolism decreases.
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
’99 NAEP Results
High School Achievement: Math and Science
315
310
305
300
Math
Science
295
290
285
280
1986
4/26/06
1990
1992
1994
1996
Texas Education Agency
Source: NAEP 1999 Trends in Academic Progress.
1999
C.Comer
2005 NAEP Data
 Math and Reading Results show significant gains
for Texas Students
 Results in science will be released soon
 Stay tuned to science listserv to see entire report
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Texas Science Initiative
Resources:
Master Teacher
Program
SBEC
UT Dept of Ed
Middle School Science
TAKS at Grade 8
Regional
Collaboratives
After School
Grants (LEP)
IPC Materials
Grants
State Partnership
Activities
Sci Mentor
Academies
AKA TEXTEAMS
Region 12
Science
Diagnostics
Teacher Quality
Grants
Strands PDAs
Girlstart
Program
THECB
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Texas Science Diagnostic System
State implementation: Fall ‘06
 TSDS is a web-based tool designed to increase
student proficiency in science developed by
Vantage Learning
 The Texas Science Diagnostic System (TSDS) will
be available through the same interface as TMDS
 TSDA will be a tool that teachers can use to identify
and remediate gaps in student performance in
science.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
TSDS Timeline of Events:
Work plan, Web interface development
Done
Linear and CAT item development
In development
TSDS customized web interface on Vantage
Learning Platform
Done
Help Desk
After TOT
Master TOT
summer ‘06
User documentation, pilot
In progress
Feature and item refinement;
Ongoing;
STATE USE
FALL ‘06
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Abrams Pre-K
Science
Complete Set of
Materials
The books can be purchased online or via phone orders. Our
website is www.abramsandcompany.com
The pages containing Early Science are at:
http://www.abramsandcompany.com/productslist.aspx?Categ
oryID=0-126
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Delta Education: Pre-K Science
Contact Info:
Miguel Gil
Regional Sales Manager
Delta Education
1-800-338-5270, ext. 168 tollfree voice mail
(210)509-9545 Office
(210)509-9709 Fax
(832)692-4841 Cell
[email protected]
[email protected]
www.delta-education.com
www.fossweb.com
www.fossworks.com
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
LakeShore Pre-K Science
 Texas package is in English and Spanish
 Pre-K materials include games, books, and
materials
 Professional Development is also available
 Contact:
 LakeShore Products, Inc.
 Richard Gomez: Regional Manager
 1-800-421-5354
 [email protected]
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Curricular Update
 Schedule for the TEKS Refinement and
TAKS Surveys aligned to textbook
adoption schedule;
 April will start discussions for K-8
language arts; and
 July discussions will begin for high
school language arts – creating a
staggered adoption of the
ELA/Reading TEKS.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Assessment Updates
 Webb Alignment study conducted
recently in each grade and subject area;
 TEA will receive preliminary results this
week.
 TEA will receive a final report in 6 weeks.
 This type of alignment will be done
regularly and Data derived will be used
to build tests.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Degree of Alignment
Standards
Standards
Assessment
Assessment
Standards
Assessment
Items
Assessment
Standards
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Depth of Knowledge
Level 1 Recall
Recall of a fact, information, or procedure.
Level 2 Skill/Concept
Use information or conceptual knowledge, two
or more steps, etc.
Level 3 Strategic Thinking
Requires reasoning, developing plan or a
sequence of steps, some complexity, more
than one possible answer.
Level 4 Extended Thinking
Requires an investigation, time to think and
process multiple conditions of the problem.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
TEKS Revision
What is said below…
Science TEKS Proposed Schedule:
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C. Comer
Executive Order RP53
Signed by the Governor of Texas on
December 16, 2005-End of Course
Tests
 The development of a series of voluntary end-ofcourse assessments in Science, Mathematics, and
other subjects, currently assessed by the 11th
grade Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills,
to measure student performance;
 For science this will include Biology, Chemistry

and Physics
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Assessment Updates
 The 2007-2008 and 2008-2009 testing
calendars are on the TEA website for
review and comment:
 Changes to note:
 End-of-Course tests were added;
 Field tests for grade 9 reading, and
grades 4 and 7 writing were moved to
the week of the primary
administrations in April.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Assessment Updates
 Performance Level Descriptors
 (PLD’s)
 Performance level descriptors for every TAKS
subject should be on the TEA website by the
end of April.
 The 2007-2008 and 2008-2009 testing
calendars are on the TEA website for review
and comment.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
2005 - 2006 Science
Testing Calendar




Grade 5 Science – April 20, 2006
Grade 8 Science – April 20, 2006
Grade 10 Science – April 20, 2006
Grade 11 Science
 October 20, 2005 (retest)
 December 6-9, 2005 (online retest)
 February 23, 2006 (retest)
 April 20, 2006 (primary)
 July 13, 2006 (retest)
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
TAKS-Alternate (TAKS-Alt)
 Reviews for each grade and subject area of
TAKS-Alternate (TAKS-Alt), an assessment
currently being developed for students with
the most significant disabilities, are halfway
done.
 The first external item review began this
week
 Teachers have given very positive feedback
about the assessment design.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
TAKS-Modified (TAKS-M)
 The special education assessment team has begun to
plan for the future TAKS-Modified (TAKS-M).
 The federal government has proposed regulations for 2%
of the special education population that could be eligible to
take an assessment that reduces the complexity of the
grade-level content.
 It has not been determined when the final regulations will
be out, but TEA is moving forward.
 Currently, assessment staff have modified or plan to
modify the TAKS (minus the field test questions) grade 5
science, grade 5 reading, and grade 10 mathematics tests
by reducing the number of answer choices, reducing
complex language and vocabulary, etc. Information about
this process and research regarding standard and nonstandard accommodations that may be allowable for this
assessment, will be presented to the assessment directors
for discussion in the near future.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Elementary Pass
Chart
Includes grades 1-5
Gives highlights from TAKS
Has TAKS OBJECTIVES and TEKS
Student Expectations that are
assessed from grades 3-5
To Order visit our online store at:
http://www.region4store.com/esc/S
hop
ID: #460-0293
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C. Comer
Elementary Spanish
Science
Includes grades 1-5 in Spanish!
Gives highlights from TAKS and
The Texas English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS)
Has TAKS Science Spanish Objectives and
TEKS Student Expectations
that are assessed from grades 3-5
 To download copies:
 http://www.tea.state.tx.us/curriculum/bili
ng/
 Go to documents and
 Science Chart 1 & 2
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
ESL TEKS
 No Child Left Behind requires the ESL TEKS
to be aligned with content standards in each
subject area and linked to assessment.

 External elementary, middle school, and high
school groups will be reviewing a model
alignment of grade 4.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Trainers available
throughout the
state!
For More
Information
Contact: The
Kolak Group
[email protected]
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Middle School Science
Includes grades K through High School
Physics
Gives highlights from TAKS
Has TAKS OBJECTIVES and
Grades 6-8 TEKS assessed on the Middle
School Science TAKS given at grade 8
To order copies contact:
Charles A. Dana Center
P.O. Box M
Austin, TX 78713-8913
Phone: 512-471-6190
Fax: 512-232-1854
[email protected]
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Secondary
Science
Vertical Alignment Chart for
Secondary Science Grade 10 and
Exit Level Grade 11
Has TAKS OBJECTIVES and TEKS
Student Expectations that are
assessed from grades 1-High School
Physics
Gives highlights from TAKS
To Order:
http://www.region4store.com/esc/Shop
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Texas Earth Science
Revolution Workshops
 In collaboration with TRC and UTIG three two-day
Free workshops that will target 8th grade TEKS tested on the
Middle School TAKS will be offered
Prime Audience: SESnet middle school specialists and TRC
Instructional Teams to be held in Austin.
Tentative Dates:
Sept. 7&8 (Thurs and Friday); Sept. 21&22 (Thurs and Friday);
and October 17&18 (Tues and Wed), 2006
National Guest Speakers and Field Experiences will be included
Invited Participants will receive CD roms and all materials for
immediate teacher training on Plate Tectonics, catastrophic
events, and climate.
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
State Presidential Awardee
2005-2006
Nancy Owens Schunke
IPC and Pre Engineering Teacher
Dunbar Jr. High
Math Science Academy
Lubbock, Texas
’05-’06 1-6 grade packets due May 1st, 2006
‘06-‘07: Gr. 7-12 Teachers Apply: www.nsf.gov/PA
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C. Comer
National Youth
ScienceCamp
 Two outstanding science Seniors from
each state chosen by Governor Perry
for all expense paid, month long trip to
Washington DC, and Monongahela
National Forest
To nominate go to www.nysc.org
or contact Chris Comer at [email protected]
Last Years Winners:
Andrew Matteson of Amarillo, TX and
Julian Hong of Ronald Reagan HS in San Antonio, TX
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
National Youth Science
Camp
 2005 Winners Announced:
 Jessica Wang
 Emily Hsu
 To nominate an outstanding 2006 Senior go to
www.nysc.org for more information
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Science List Serve:
Please Join…
Our way of
“shouting out”
to you when
you are busy
And something
Important comes
Up for science
In Texas…
www.tea.state.tx.us/list/
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
Who to
Contact:
Texas Education Agency:
Chris Castillo-Comer
Director of Science
512-463-9581
[email protected]
4/26/06
Texas Education Agency
C.Comer
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TEA Update Spring 2006