Educators preparing for a year like no other
As schools across Texas start the 2020-21 school year, teachers and other educators are facing a year like no other. They're sanitizing classrooms, planning online lessons and welcoming at least some of their students back to campus. The Texas Tribune offers this look at how four schools are preparing for the year.

School is already in session in several districts, and many start next week. Others have delayed the start until after Labor Day, including schools in Cameron County, which can't start in-person learning until Sept. 28.

TEA did not release any new guidance this week, but we have reorganized our COVID-19 FAQ on 2020-21 Education Issues to make it easier to find information. The new page divides questions into six subjects: Health Guidelines, Attendance, Instructional Models, Special Populations, Personnel and Employment Issues, and Finance and Budget Issues.

While this information is not legal advice, we hope it helps as you return to school. Members who have concerns about their health and safety or what options may be available based upon their circumstances should call the Legal Department at 888-879-8282 to speak with a staff attorney.
Free CPE helps teachers with transition to online learning

TEA has developed a partnership with OnRamps, a signature initiative of The University of Texas at Austin, to offer five free modules through the OnRamps Distance Learning Catalog for middle and high school teachers across Texas to help them transition to online learning environments. The topics are:
  • Cultivating Authentic Student-Teacher Relationships in Distance Learning
  • Aligning to Synchronous and Asynchronous Experiences
  • Learner-Centered Design
  • Facilitating Feedback at a Distance to Improve Students' Awareness of Learning Progress
  • Student-Driven Self-Monitoring within a Distance Learning Cycle
Teachers will earn one hour of CPE credit for completion of each module. 
Counselor seeks hearing to contest certificate sanctions

A complaint was filed with the State Board for Educator Certification against a counselor who resigned from the district. The district claimed that the counselor resigned without consent and requested that her certification be sanctioned for contract abandonment. The counselor requested a hearing before the State Office of Administrative Hearings to contest the imposition of sanctions on her certification.

During the hearing, the counselor testified that she trained her replacement, did a handoff with her replacement in every classroom and at every grade level, closed out all but two of her parent meetings, left her replacement with guides and plans, and provided her replacement with her telephone number to use if there were questions. Click here to read more.
Have questions for TRS? Schedule a virtual session

TRS released a new video this week to remind members that their staff is available to help members with questions. Virtual counseling sessions are in full swing for members who would like to “meet” with a benefit counselor. Click here to watch the video and learn how to schedule a secure and private virtual appointment with TRS.
Renew your membership and make sure you stay protected

The 2020-21 school year is sure to be unpredictable. Don't go unprotected, renew today!
If you have already renewed, thank you!
Encourage your colleagues to join TCTA and you could earn $25 for every two new Active-level members you recruit. Our forms are paperless this year, so ask your co-workers to enter your TCTA member number in the Take 2 box.
PO BOX 1489 AUSTIN, TX 78767 | 888-879-8282 | TCTA.ORG