News Updates: Deukmajian vetoes CAP, Other Education Measures; Texas Teacher Groups Press
Mr. Deukmejian said the $9 million in the bill for the cap program should come from funds protected by the state's Proposition 98 education-funding guarantee, rather than from other state revenues.
The Governor earlier had removed the cap funds from the budget approved by the legislature in the summer, after which lawmakers moved to restore funding through a new bill.
The cap program tests 3rd-, 6th-, 8th-, and 12th-grade students in reading, writing, mathematics, and other subjects each year.
In other action on measures approved by the legislature during its 1990 session, Mr. Deukmejian vetoed measures that would have:
Required all students to take aids-prevention classes at least once in both middle school and high school.
Established a savings-bond program for college expenses.
Created the nation's first loan-assumption program for prospective early-childhood educators.
The bill would have given 50 students a year the chance to have up to $2,000 in college loans repaid if they agreed to teach, or $4,000 if they agreed to supervise for two years in a licensed early-childhood program.
Called for guidelines for screening students in grades 4-12 for cholesterol.
Mr. Deukmejian signed, however, legislation providing a tax credit of $1,000 for families with incomes of up to $40,000 a year in which a parent stayed home to care for an infant.
Four organizations that represent Texas teachers have sued the state to force it to proceed with a process for designating "master teachers," the highest rating of the state's career-ladder program.
In a lawsuit filed last month, the Texas State Teachers Association, the Texas Federation of Teachers, the Association of Texas Professional Educators, and the Texas Classroom Teachers Association accused the education department of stalling in the development of an oral examination that is one of the tests to be used to judge teachers for placement on the career ladder's highest rung beginning this school year.
Commissioner of Education William N. Kirby called the teacher groups' accusation "irresponsible." A spokesman for the education department said the examination was not developed because the legislature did not appropriate the approximately $850,000 needed to create it.
Instead, lawmakers passed a bill during their last session eliminating the required oral examination. Some provisions of the law were challenged by the Association of Texas Professional Educators, however, and the measure was overturned by the state supreme court.
The written examination required for teachers who wish to be designated as "masters" has been developed and will be offered next month.