From crisis mapping to city planning, geographers provide critical insight and skills that are valued by employers and public sector policy-makers.
Having dedicated K-12 geography courses sets the foundation for students to acquire the skills and abilities to use maps, imagery, and geospatial technologies to investigate significant spatial and environmental issues.
Over the last several months, the Texas Alliance has spoken with numerous school district administrators and teachers. The focus of our discussions has been how best to implement the education reforms outlined in House Bill 5. The Texas Alliance, in consultation with key social studies educators and leaders, developed a consolidated list of recommendations and rationales.
House Bill 5, http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=83R&Bill=HB5
Texas Education Agency HB 5 Overview, http://www.tea.state.tx.us/index2.aspx?id=25769806149
TAGE would like to thank the following advisors for developing this statement: Dr. Jeff Lash, Mary Curtis, Pat Hardy, Marci Smith-Deal, Linda Hammon, Mary Lynn Johnson, Dr. Rosemary Morrow, and Dr. Jo Beth Oestreich.
*Source: Oxera Consulting Studies, http://www.oxera.com/Oxera/media/Oxera/downloads/reports/What-is-the-economic-impact-of-Geo-services_1.pdf
Deadline is January 24
The Texas Education Agency is now accepting nominations to the state review panels that will evaluate instructional materials (including Social Studies and World Geography) submitted for adoption under Proclamation 2015. TAGE strongly encourages its members to apply for this opportunity. Learn more
January 28-31, Austin
The SBOE is meeting for the second reading and final adoption of the HB 5 Graduation Requirements. The public comment period began December 20 and continues until the January SBOE meeting.
TEA has a site dedicated to HB 5. This site provides HB 5 text, a general overview, a side-by-side comparison of the graduation requirements, implementation and transition information, and individual documents prepared form the SBOE, including Social Studies Discussion Document (PDF, 752KB).
Governor Perry signed HB 5. The high school foundation plan on requires three social studies credits, one credit is either world geography or world history. It also added a third option to satisfy the credit with language "the State Board of Education shall adopt criteria to allow a student to comply with curriculum requirements for the world geography or world history credit under Subsection (b-1)(4) by successfully completing a combined world history and world geography course developed by the State Board of Education." TAGE has concerns about the combined course and will work with our TCs to develop a response. Please let us know if you have any questions.
If you would like to express your opinion on this letter, please contact the following.
Dan.firstname.lastname@example.org Representative Branch
Governors office, 512-463-2000-this is a general number, ask for education or pending bills contact person.
Today the Senate amendments version of HB 5 was posted. The foundation plan requires three social studies credits with one credit in United States history, at least one-half credit in government and at least one-half credit in economics, and one credit in world geography or world history.
The bill also proposes a combined world geography/world history course for the third social studies credit.
The latest version of House Bill 5 no longer specifically includes world geography or world history in the foundation plan or in any endorsements. The foundation plan now requires one credit of US history, one-half credit in government, and one-half credit in economics, and one other unspecified credit. The number of endorsements has been reduced to only include STEM, Business & Industry, and Arts & Humanities and deletes Public Service and Multidisciplinary Studies, and the bill continues to propose five EOC exams. HB 5 has been placed on the Senate Intent Calendar with no specific date set at this time. bill text
The latest version of House Bill 5 does not include world geography or world history in the foundation plan or in any endorsements. The number of endorsements has been reduced to only include STEM, Business & Industry, and Arts & Humanities and deletes Public Service and Multidisciplinary Studies, and the bill continues to propose five EOC exams. HB 5 has been placed on the Senate Intent Calendar with no specific date set at this time.
Dear TAGE supporters,
Recent legislation, specifically Senate Bill 3 and House Bill 5 has created a sense of urgency on our part. SB 3 proposes to create an option for students to either take world geography or world history for the Foundation High School Program (4x4). HB 5 identifies world geography as a required component for the Foundation High School program.
TAGE supports the inclusion of world geography as a requirement for high school graduation. I would like to include a few figures for you to consider regarding the importance of students taking world geography at the high school level.
Two studies, the Boston Consulting Group and Oxera Consulting Studies revealed results of the importance of continued investment in geographic education. Last year the geospatial industry generated $73 billion in revenue in the United States. Additionally, the studies estimate this industry to grow between 25-30% per year. If our state is looking to generate revenue and job growth opportunities, geographic education is a key component to see these two areas expand.
TAGE encourages you to contact your representatives by email or phone call in support of keeping world geography as a required course in the Foundation High School Program. Below is a link to access your state representatives. The 83rd Legislature meets for 140 days. The first 60 days are devoted to preparing and filing bills for consideration in various committees, and no voting can take place on these bills. March 11th is the first opportunity for elected officials to vote on education and other bills impacting the future of our children's education in Texas. Please take the time to voice your opinion before it's too late.
Thank you for your support of geographic literacy in our great State of Texas.
Dr. Jo Beth Oestreich
Coordinator, Texas Alliance for Geographic Education