FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 03/27/2013
Representative Mary González passes amendment on school accountability bill
Representative Mary González passes amendment on school accountability bill for exemption offered to English Language Learners on state assessments
Austin, TX—Yesterday, Representative Mary González added an amendment to House Bill 5, which reformed end-of-course exams by making practical adjustments for English Language Learning students.
House Bill 5—heard yesterday on the floor—is the major school accountability bill for the 83rd Legislative session. The bill reduces the number of standardized tests in high schools. Representative González’s amendment requires that an English Language Learning student or recent immigrant must be enrolled in a U.S. school for a minimum of 60 consecutive days to count towards a school year of enrollment, for the purposes of a one year exemption from state assessments given to these students.
“House Bill 5 removes many of the high-stakes tests facing our high school students. I had originally identified solving some of the issues facing our ELL students through my bill, HB 1132,” said González. “This challenge is one that faces many children in my district, as well as others along the border. With this amendment, recently immigrated students who are of limited English proficiency now have a set amount of time longer than a couple of days for school year requirements."
"Recently immigrated English Language Learners face considerable challenges. In attempting to learn English as a second language, these students are simultaneously expected to master core content taught in a language they do not fully understand. With the passage of this amendment, I'm glad to see that these high school students will now be given a minimum of 60 days to be taught English and master content in their new language before they are required to take any state assessments."