Senate Bill 1/House Bill 1 - the appropriations bill for fiscal years 2006 and 2007.
What: SB 1 and HB 1, when filed, contained funding for three out of the seven subjects of instructional materials that are scheduled to go into classrooms later this year. Up for funding are three subjects that were deferred during the last legislative session (Career and Technology, English as a Second Language, and Technology Applications) as well as four subjects that are being selected right now by schools (Fine Arts, Health, Languages and Physical Education).

Where: The filed bill for TEA's budget can be found here: and as it moves through the process the budget will be under 2006-07 Biennium Appropriations Bills at

When: The Senate Finance Committee will approve SB 1, the state's budget for the next two years, and send it to the Senate floor and then to the House. The House Appropriations Committee will then approve SB 1 and send it to the House floor. The House and Senate will then likely go to a conference committee that will meet through much of April and May, and finally both the House and Senate will vote to approve the conference committee's work in May.

The House Appropriations Committee voted the Committee Substitute for Senate Bill 1 (appropriations bill) and Committee Substitute for HB 10 (supplemental appropriations bill) out of committee on March 29. HB 10 contains only enough money for instructional materials in three out of the seven subjects that are supposed to go into schools this fall. The money for the other four subjects is contained in a "wish list" item in SB 1, but there is no funding for those materials at this time. Both bills will be on the House floor on April 6.
House Bill 2 - the House's school finance and education reform bill
What: The bill creates an "Instructional Materials and Technology Allotment" of $150 per student for approved instructional materials, beginning with the 2006-07 school year. It expands the technology allotment for the 2005-06 school year to $70 per student from its current $30 per student.

Where: The bill can be found at

When: The bill passed the House of Representatives on March 11 and will soon be heard in the Senate Education Committee. Check here for details on when hearings will occur.
Senate Bill 2 - the Senate's school finance and education reform plan.
What: The Senate's plan includes the following: "8. Technology and Textbooks. (a) Includes textbook funding in school finance formulas. (b) Combine current textbook funding with the technology allotment to create a textbook/technology allotment. (c) Allow local districts to spend textbook/technology funds as they choose, on books or computers."

Where: The bill hasn't been filed, but the bullet points outlining the Senate's plan can be found at

When: The Senate will likely wait for House Bill 2 and act on that bill when it comes over in mid-March.
House Bill 4 - the technology and instructional materials bill.
What: The bill requires the State Board of Education to revise its adoption cycles to ensure that not later than the 2007-08 school year, electronic instructional materials will be available for each subject and grade level for which the SBOE has adopted Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). It also creates a technology group within TEA that will establish procedures for accelerating the development and implementation of those materials, and requires TEA to encourage alignment of supplemental educational resources with the TEKS. It also allows publishers to offer their adopted electronic instructional materials on a subscription basis. Finally, the bill expands the technology allotment from the current $30 per student to $300 per student for grades 6-12 for schools that commit a local match of $50 per student and that are identified by TEA as meeting the goals of the state's long-range plan for technology. The expanded technology allotment, estimated to cost $700 million per year when fully implemented, could be used only for "wireless electronic mobile computing devices," productivity software, electronic learning software aligned with the TEKS, library and other research tools, electronic assessment tools, electronic learning tools to improve communications, classroom and school management systems, professional development to integrate these tools, and additional infrastructure and technologies to support these tools.

Where: The bill can be found at

When: House Bill 4 has been posted for a public hearing in the House Public Education Committee on Tuesday, March 15 at 2:00 p.m. or upon the House's adjournment, at Texas Capitol Extension Room E2.036; see the committee in action at

House Bill 10 - the supplemental appropriations bill.
What: HB 10 contains the $37 million that the Texas Education Agency is short in the current year to pay for instructional materials that already went into classrooms in the 2004-05 school year. The bill will be referred to House Appropriations Committee soon.

Where: The bill can be found at

When: Supplemental appropriations bills typically will move more quickly than a regular appropriations bill during the session. Expect to see committee hearings on this bill in the near future.

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