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Monday, April 15, 2013

Bonnen Co-Authors Bill Bringing Transparency to CSCOPE and Digital Curriculum in Texas

Vol. 9 No. 7
Many parents and educators have expressed concern to me about the lack of transparency and oversight of the CSCOPE curriculum that is being adopted and utilized by public school districts in Texas classrooms. I am proud to be among the first members of the House to respond to this problem as a co-author of HB 760, the CSCOPE Transparency Act.  I applaud Representative Steve Toth's efforts in filing this bill and I am working closely with him towards its passage.
The CSCOPE Transparency Act would provide the State Board of Education (SBOE) -- whose members are elected by Texas voters -- oversight of public school curriculum and materials, including digital texts and lesson plans.  This will ensure that the teaching materials being used in our schools adhere to the standards set by the SBOE serving as the voice of citizens. This will ensure that all materials, to include but not limited to CSCOPE, must adhere to the same high standards as textbooks and other printed materials in our state.
The CSCOPE Transparency Act also provides the opportunity for the SBOE to keep our Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills, which establishes course requirements, aligned with the curriculum used in schools. The Act provides school administrators more opportunity for leadership, and prevents them from being forced into dictatorial enforcement of an ambiguous curriculum. And most importantly, it strengthens parental and public involvement in the cultivation of Texas' most precious resources -- our children.
I am proud to join Representative Toth in spearheading this effort and I believe it is critical that the legislature move this measure on to the Governor's desk.