One Committed Dad Can Make a Difference

May 14, 2016 by


“One Committed Dad Can Make a Difference”

By Donna Garner



The following link leads to a report written by a dad here in Texas. Randy Houchins is an engineer, and he became so upset about how math was being taught to his daughter that he took matters into his own hands.  


After testifying a number of times before the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE), Randy went to the Texas Education Agency’s website where released questions from the STAAR/End-of-Course Tests are posted.  Using those questions, he wrote a brilliant report in which he exposed the methodology standards found in Texas’ Math Standards (TEKS – used from 2012 to the present).  


By Texas law, the standards adopted by the Texas State Board of Education are to set the goals of WHAT Texas teachers should teach but not HOW to teach it.  The “HOW” is methodology.  Texas teachers are to have the flexibility to decide how to present the curriculum (utilizing all sorts of learning strategies), how to organize the teaching units, and in which order to present them.


Common Core Standards are full of the same “reform math” methodology in which students spend their time creating pictorial models rather than learning how to get the right answer.  


The SBOE is going to be discussing Randy’s report and the Math TEKS at its July meeting.


Also on the July SBOE agenda is a discussion of the English / Language Arts / Reading (ELAR) TEKS (adopted in 2008) which are being reviewed.  Instead of doing a review, some members of the ELAR Review Team are trying to rewrite the present ELAR/TEKS and fill them with methodology (such as including an entire strand named “Collaboration”).  Collaboration would force group-think (instead of individual accountability) and subjectivity into Texas’ classrooms. This mandating of methodology is illegal in Texas, but it may take the same type of parental involvement as shown by Randy Houchins to stop the efforts of those who want the new ELAR/TEKS to look like the Common Core Standards.   


4.7.16 – REPORT:  2015 STAAR Questions & TEKS Review – Written by Randy Houchins





Donna Garner

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