Why does the Texas Education Agency promote the CSCOPE instructional material sold by the Educational Service Centers (ESCs)? The ESCs originally sold CSCOPE as being a replacement for textbooks.
The mission of the Texas Education Agency is to provide leadership, guidance and resources to help schools meet the educational needs of all students and prepare them for success in the global economy.
The head of the TEA is the Commissioner of Education, who is supported by a hierarchy of a chief deputy commissioner, a deputy commissioner, associate commissioners, division directors, and agency staff. The TEA Organizational Chart (PDF, 18 KB) illustrates agency hierarchy. This organizational Chart is shown below. One would think with all the people on the state payroll, quality help would be provided to Marlin ISD, a school that has had poor leadership for no less than a decade. Students have been scoring very low on the TAKS and STAAR tests, but what caught TEA’s attention was the extraordinary number of special education students. When this was not corrected, TEA sent a conservator to
twist a few heads around turn around the school. Elizabeth Rowland, a retired special education director for ESC 11, was the conservator sent to dictate plans to improve student grades throughout the school district. Ms. Rowland mandated that Marlin ISD purchase the CSCOPE instructional materials from the local ESC, Region 12.
In November, 2011 the CSCOPE director at Region 12, Becca Bell and the Marlin supervisor, Marsha Ridlehuber and the district instruction director, Jamey Johnson informed me that the 5th grade science book, Harcourt Science, 2000 was so outdated that it could not be used to prepare students for the STAAR test. A new superintendent and elementary principal were hired to start the 2012-2013 school year. I asked these new administrators to give students the outdated science books. Any book is better than no book. The CSCOPE/TRS materals continued to be mandated by the TEA conservators. Since Jamey Johnson remained as the district’s instructional director, she continued to keep all textbooks stored. Students were never given textbooks, thus the 5th grade students continued to fail the STAAR tests.
Recently I was allowed to have a copy of the Harcourt Science (2000) textbook for 5th grade. I read this science textbook and found every 5th grade science TEKS for the TAKS tests as well as the new TEKS for STAAR.
The TEA conservator and the Marlin administration purposely DID NOT provide adequate TEKS instruction materials. The science textbooks are still stored. After three years of inadequate leadership and guidance from TEA conservators, in 2014, Marlin Elementary ranked worse than 99.7% of elementary schools in Texas.
I reported this to the past Commissioner of Education, Robert Scott and continued reporting problems to the acting commissioner, Michael Williams. Neither of these men ever responded to me. I get auto replies from Williams. I reported problems to Monica Martinez at TEA. The results was that Elizabeth Rowland was replaced but there have been no changes. Even with such a low ranking, TEA conservators give Marlin ISD good reports and now the district only has a monitor. TEA conservators and the turn around program is one big joke on tax payers. School taxes are used to pay the TEA workers a handsome fee to turn things upside down and collect their fees as long as possible. When the TEA workers leave, most of the quality teachers have left because TEA conservators do not work with teachers–instead they control teachers.
The 2014-2015 Marlin ISD teaching staff has little experience. Thanks TEA for Facilitating the Failure of Marlin students and encouraging veteran teachers to find jobs where CSCOPE is not mandated.