Measure What Matters

Conference Resources

What makes a school great? What are parents really looking for in a high-quality school? What do teachers think is most important? What do students want and need?

On Jan 18, 2022 we gathered with more than 130 in-person and 250 online attendees to discuss these issues and more at our Measure What Matters Conference. We will continue to convene throughout 2022 to discuss this important issue.

Please join the conversation and let your voice be heard.

Video recordings of this event, including any portion of this event, may not be used by any person outside of Raise Your Hand Texas without our explicit permission. Thank you.

Welcome Session

Raise Your Hand Texas is embarking on an ambitious campaign to lay the groundwork for robust school accountability reform in the future. The time to start this important work is now.


Michelle Smith, Ph.D.

Executive Director, Raise Your Hand Texas

Austin, TX


Libby Cohen, Ph.D.

Senior Director of Advocacy, Raise Your Hand Texas

Austin, TX


Bob Popinski

Senior Director of Policy, Raise Your Hand Texas

Austin, TX

Kelli Moulton, Ed.D.

Chair, Raise Your Hand Texas Assessment and Accountability Council

Corsicana, TX

Session 1 – The Past, Present, and Future of Assessment and Accountability in Texas

From TABS to STAAR, Dee Carney discusses the politics, the policy, and implementation of assessment and accountability systems that have impacted our state’s students for generations.  She provides a series of quick FAQs which include what the federal government requires in terms of the number tests and how our state calculates A-F ratings.

Dee Carney

Assessment, Accountability, and Education Consultant

Austin, TX

Session 2 – Next Generation of STAAR

Tyson Kane describes the state’s transition to online STAAR and EOC tests, including the new state requirement that only 75% of points on the STAAR test can be based on multiple choice questions. Tyson also discusses the new question types students will now have to prepare for, as well as the science of teaching and reading.

Tyson Kane portrait

Tyson Kane

Associate Commissioner, Texas Education Agency – Strategy and Analytics

Austin, TX

Session 3 – How Did Texas Get Here and Where Should We Go Next?

Texas assessment and accountability systems have evolved over time. Two former Texas Education Agency Commissioners and an influential state Senator discuss the history of how the state decides public education policy and implements it. Commissioner Mike Moses discusses how George W. Bush changed the national discussion on public school assessment and accountability in the 1990s. Commissioner Robert Scott discusses why he decided to call the overemphasis of test results a “perversion” of that system a decade later. And Senator Seliger discusses the intention and politics behind some of the decisions made during the legislative process.


Ross Ramsey

Executive Director, The Texas Tribune


Mike Moses, Ed.D.

Former Commissioner of the Texas Education Agency (1995-1999)


Senator Kel Selinger

Texas Senate from the 31st District (2004-Present)

Robert Scott portrait

Robert Scott

Former Commissioner of the Texas Education Agency (2007-2012)

Austin, TX

Session 4 – Are We Measuring What Matters?

These four education professionals discuss what it is like to implement decisions made at the state-level in our school districts and campuses, and the impact it has on our students. They describe how assessments are supposed to inform classroom instruction and help student academic growth. They also give first-hand accounts of what a day of STAAR testing looks like on school campuses.


Dala Henry

Instructional Coach, Bryan ISD


Claudia A. Ureno-Olivas

Principal of Ascarate Elementary, Ysleta ISD

Tory Hill, Ed.D.

Superintendent, Sweeny ISD


Theresa Valls Trevino, M.D.

Texans Advocating for Meaningful Student Assessment

Session 5 – Paths to Different Accountability Frameworks

How can we create a school accountability system that puts parents and students at the center? 

John Tanner, an educational writer and thought leader committed to benefits-based accountability, discusses what accountability should look and feel like in every school and community. His discussion on school accountability begins with the question,“What are your hopes and dreams for your children?” He details how to make that possible over time by changing our mindset regarding how states and schools structure their accountability systems.


John Tanner

Founder bravEd True Accountability Framework

Session 6 – Your Voice Matters

Raise Your Hand Texas’ senior director of advocacy Libby Malone shares how to stay involved with Measure What Matters all the way through the 88th Legislative Session.


Libby Cohen, Ph.D.

Senior Director of Advocacy, Raise Your Hand Texas

Austin, TX

Texas is a long-standing leader in school accountability reform and is uniquely positioned to lead the way toward a more useful, fair, and holistic approach.

We have the opportunity to raise our standards for success and raise student outcomes like never before. Join us as we chart a course toward the future for our 5.4 million public school students.