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Education Commissioner Uses San Antonio Visit To Build Curriculum Recommendation

Christopher C. Leonard
TEA Commissioner Michael Williams.

Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams visited San Antonio’s Toyota plant this week to engage professionals and state officials on how to implement new curriculum changes that offer career and technology opportunities.

Williams said he needs to understand what skills students need to possess before, during, and after high school.

"So we had a conversation about how the business community can be greater involved in K-12 education by having conversations with K-12 education leaders, letting them know precisely the kinds of skills that they need youngsters to develop by letting them know as it relates to career and technology tracks," Williams said.

Williams said schools will need to start preparing kids before high school in order to ready them for the new career and technology curriculum standard set by the legislature this session.

"There is no doubt that there has to be -- after the passage of HB 5 -- a very very strong relationship between K-12, post-secondary and the business community," Williams said. "So we had a conversation about how the business community could be greatly involved."

Williams said there are classes and skills that students need before they chose between the multitude of career and technology endorsements, which happens for students around the eighth grade. He said the business community can be a guide for not only what students need to learn, but also what type of jobs businesses need to fill.

Williams will provide the State Board of Education his input on the matter before a final vote on how each new curriculum standard should appear. Those new educational tracks for students are scheduled to take effect during the 2014/2015 school year.