Teacher Preparation

The information on this page is updated regularly.  

This guidance provides general information as it pertains to COVID-19 and Educator Preparation Programs. THECB staff will update this guidance as we receive additional information. If your institution has a particular need this general guidance does not address, please contact Stacey Silverman at Stacey.Silverman@highered.texas.gov. In addition to this guidance, please consult THECB’s Coronavirus Update for Higher Education page for state and federal information on COVID-19 and higher education. The information on this page is updated daily.

Note: As alternative approaches to instruction are considered, the THECB encourages institutions to include their financial aid offices in those discussions. The regulations for federal financial aid are complex, and financial aid directors can provide insight on how different approaches may impact a student’s eligibility for financial aid.

How can candidates complete the 15 clock-hours of field-based experiences on a school campus if the schools are closed?

Governor Abbott has waived the requirement that 15 clock-hours of field-based experiences must be completed on a school campus for those completing field-based experience requirements in spring or summer 2020. All field-based experiences may be completed by use of electronic transmission or other video or technology-based method.

What if students are enrolled in education courses that require observations?

Note: The following guidance provided for spring 2020 has been extended for the summer and fall of 2020.

For community colleges with students enrolled in the Academic Course Guide Manual (ACGM) courses for education majors, EDUC 1301 and/or EDUC 2301, and early childhood education courses, the required observation hours may be waived, including number, duration, timing, and format. All field-based experiences may be completed by use of electronic transmission or other video or technology-based method.

For universities, the Texas Education Agency (TEA) has shared the following information with stakeholders through a webinar held on March 25, 2020: All field-based experiences may be completed by electronic transmission or other video or technology-based method.

With schools and districts closed or moving online, how can candidates who are completing clinical teaching meet the required number of days?

In accordance with Governor Abbott’s waiver, candidates completing clinical teaching during spring 2020 who meet the following criteria will be considered to have successfully met requirements for clinical teaching:

  • Completed at least half of the required days of clinical teaching,
  • Demonstrated proficiency in each of the educator standards for their assignments (to be determined by the preparation program), and
  • Received a recommendation from their field supervisor and cooperating teacher that the candidate should be recommended for a standard certificate.

How can candidates who were in clinical teaching this semester but were not able to meet the above criteria still qualify?

In accordance with Governor Abbott’s waiver, the requirements for candidates’ clinical teaching experiences to be completed in an actual school setting are also waived.

This means that these candidates may complete any additional requirement by:

  • supporting their cooperating teacher through non-traditional means, and
  • may demonstrate proficiency based on alternative arrangements established by the preparation program, such as simulated, remote, virtual, or video classroom experiences and reflection.

How can Educator Preparation Programs provide the required number of formal observations for candidates?

In accordance with Governor Abbott’s waiver, all requirements related to field supervision of candidates have been waived, including the number, duration, timing, and format of the observation.

With schools and districts closed or moving online, how can our candidates who are completing internships on an Intern or Probationary certification complete their internship?

Colleges are encouraged to partner with their local hospital and others in their community to help combat the COVID-19 pandemic in a way that ensures public safety. In considering whether to lend equipment to a hospital for its COVID-19 response, a college should coordinate with the hospital to verify that donated equipment is suitable for patient use. Instructional Nursing and Allied Health equipment is designed for instruction purposes and may be not be adaptable to human use. Ventilators, for example, may have been manufactured specifically for instructional use with mannequins.

Such non-instructional use of equipment is a variance from the requirements of UGG 200.313(c)(1) and (2) and is applicable only to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The college must maintain adequate internal controls to document and track use of instructional medical equipment for this purpose (UGG 200.302 and 200.333)

What do we do if we have a consultant/contractor or vendor contract for which services cannot be fulfilled due to COVID-19?

Contracts: Per the RFA,, consultants/contractors are required to be paid on a reimbursement basis. However, colleges should review contracts to determine if cancelation fees appear. Where possible, an amendment could be discussed with contracted parties to include cancelation in the event of extraordinary circumstances, so fees are not incurred. If a cancelation fee cannot be avoided, this would be an allowable charge to the grant per OMB guidance related to COVID-19 during this time. Please note that additional funds cannot be made available for these costs. They must be absorbed into your existing Perkins budget.

Vendors:The same principles that apply to cancelations apply to vendors as far as a contract with a vendor is concerned. If the college has purchased services through a vendor and cannot use those any longer because of COVID-19, a discussion between contracted parties should be had if necessary, to amend the contract to cover cancelation in extraordinary circumstances.

In any case, the effort to avoid cancelation fees should be documented in the event an auditor wants to see evidence that a cancelation fee was an allowable cost.

Does guidance about Perkins salaries and benefits include student employees paid with Perkins funds?


Perkins-funded student employees may be paid in accordance with a college’s local policy for continued pay for employees during emergencies or extraordinary circumstances.

Our college has established an emergency fund to help students impacted financially by the COVID-19 pandemic. Can Perkins funds be used to help CTE students affected?

Perkins funds may be used to supplement a COVID-19 student emergency fund but should be limited to support directly related to instruction. A CTE student impacted by COVID-19 may receive support for: course-related childcare; certification testing vouchers; instructional texts and study materials, whether hardcopy or online; required supplies, equipment, and uniforms for courses or work-based learning; and mileage reimbursement and other transportation costs such as bus vouchers. Other uses of funds for student support should be discussed with a college’s Perkins grant advisor to confirm allowability.

Appropriate records and cost documentation must be maintained to substantiate the charging of students’ instruction-related emergency costs to the grant (UGG 200.302 and 200.333).

Our college is looking at online instructional tools that require students to purchase an access code at $75 per student. Is it permissible to use Perkins funds to assist CTE students with the cost?

Access codes for online instruction are an allowable cost for special population students. If a student’s personally identifiable information (PII) must be provided to the online provider, an agreement with the provider must be in place to require destruction of the PII at the end of the course.

If funds need to be repurposed for this cost, colleges should consult RFA Appendix L Changes to Grant Plan or Budget.


Inquiries should be directed to Mindy Nobles.

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