Adopted Amendments to 19 TAC Chapter 157, Hearings and Appeals, Subchapter EE, Review by State Office of Administrative Hearings: Certain Accreditation Sanctions
I. Statutory Citation (PDF)
II. Text of Adopted Amendments to 19 TAC Chapter 157, Hearings and Appeals, Subchapter EE, Review by State Office of Administrative Hearings: Certain Accreditation Sanctions (PDF)
The rule action presented in this item will be filed as adopted with the Texas Register under the commissioner's rulemaking authority. This item adopts amendments to 19 TAC Chapter 157, Hearings and Appeals, Subchapter EE, Review by State Office of Administrative Hearings: Certain Accreditation Sanctions. The adopted amendments update and clarify provisions relating to the review of certain accreditation sanctions by the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH). The adopted amendments reflect changes in the Texas Education Code (TEC), Chapter 39, as reflected in House Bill (HB) 3, 81st Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2009. No changes were made to the rules since published as proposed.
TEC, §39.152, as amended and renumbered by HB 3, 81st Texas Legislature, 2009.
December 22, 2010.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION AND SIGNIFICANT ISSUES:
HB 1, 79th Texas Legislature, Third Called Session, 2006, required that an opportunity for challenging the record review of accreditation sanctions be available in specified circumstances and provided by the SOAH. The rules adopted in 19 TAC Chapter 157, Hearings and Appeals, Subchapter EE, Review by State Office of Administrative Hearings: Certain Accreditation Sanctions, implement these requirements. HB 3, 81st Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2009, enacted numerous changes to the TEC, Chapter 39, and renumbered the chapter, requiring that existing rules be revised and updated.
The adopted amendments to 19 TAC Chapter 157, Subchapter EE, update and clarify existing rules in light of HB 3. Specifically, the adopted amendments establish the following.
The adopted amendments to 19 TAC §157.1151, Applicability, and 19 TAC §157.1153, Applicability of Other Law, update statutory references in alignment with HB 3.
The adopted amendment to 19 TAC §157.1155, Petition for Review, revises the timeline by which a petitioner may file with the Texas Education Agency (TEA) a petition for review. Additionally, as a result of the amendment to shorten the timeline under subsection (a), subsection (b) was revised to allow a petition for review to be amended or supplemented after the deadline for filing a petition for review.
The adopted amendment to 19 TAC §157.1167, Expedited Review, adds subsection (f), requiring an administrative law judge to issue a final order no later than May 31 immediately following a final order issued no later than March 15 under 19 TAC §97.1037(f), relating to the record review of a decision to assign an accreditation status of Not Accredited-Revoked to a district. A minor conforming amendment was made to subsection (a).
The adopted amendment to 19 TAC §157.1169, Conduct of Review During a Ratings Appeal, updates statutory references in alignment with HB 3.
The adopted amendment to 19 TAC §157.1171, Final Decision, removes a reference to a section of statute that was deleted and restructured in HB 3 and relies on other statutory references and procedures reflected in the subchapter.
No changes were made to the rules since published as proposed.
The TEA has determined that there are no additional costs to persons or entities required to comply with the rule actions. The rule actions add clarification of law related to HB 3, 81st Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2009. While there is no additional fiscal burden beyond what already is required by law, a district may incur costs if it elects to hire an attorney to represent them in a SOAH proceeding. The TEA may incur costs in contracting with the SOAH for these hearings.
The TEA has determined that there is no direct adverse economic impact for small businesses and microbusinesses; therefore, no regulatory flexibility analysis, specified in Texas Government Code, §2006.002, is required.
PUBLIC AND STUDENT BENEFIT:
The adopted rule actions ensure that entities are afforded appropriate review of certain accreditation sanctions and provide the TEA and SOAH procedures for the conduct of such reviews.
PROCEDURAL AND REPORTING IMPLICATIONS:
The adopted rule actions have no new reporting implications. Changes to current procedures include changes to timeframes related to petitions in 19 TAC §157.1155 and additional specifications related to an accreditation status final order issued by an administrative law judge in 19 TAC §157.1167.
LOCALLY MAINTAINED PAPERWORK REQUIREMENTS:
The adopted rule actions have no new locally maintained paperwork requirements.
The public comment period on the proposal began on October 8, 2010, and ended November 8, 2010. No public comments were received.
OTHER COMMENTS AND RELATED ISSUES:
Staff Members Responsible:
Laura Taylor, Associate Commissioner, Accreditation
Jim Thompson, Senior Counsel, Legal Services
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