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The Texas Blue
Advancing Progressive Ideas

Bill Tracker: HB 2238 & SB 1066 Texas Education Data System

When I worked for the Arizona Department of Economic Security back in the day, I was tasked with finding out how people within the department communicated with one another. What I found out was that there were no guidelines for purchasing computers and no standards for compatibility. Each division within the department operated on its own LAN with its own software. It was so varied that the Director, my boss, could not send a department-wide email because it would not reach everyone.

Texans must have been seeing or experiencing the same kinds of problems at that time. Their solution was the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS). It allows people to collect and access all types of educational data. However, the system is getting old.

Two identical bills in both chambers, HB 2238 and SB 1066 hope to replace the Public Education Information Management System with the Texas Education Data System. Out with PEIMS and in with TEDS. The shift from PEIMS to TEDS would be a massive undertaking, but arguably a necessary one.

Just from an acronym standpoint TEDS is already better. But the true promise of TEDS is that it will allow educators, lawmakers, and citizens the ability to “observe the P-16 educational pipeline in Texas.” The main benefit of the new system will be that the State will be able to better assess financial and academic accountability. TEDS will also provide data to districts at the local level.

One interesting aspect of this program is that it will try to determine indicators for identifying students who are likely to drop out of school. We have always had a pretty good idea of what the key indicators for dropping out have been. Have they changed over the years?

The bill is working its way slowly through the system. Will the price tag be too great this session?

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