Court Professionals Continuing Education
Continuing Education (CE) Requirements
Court coordinators are governed by Texas Government Code §74.106 and the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals’ Rules of Judicial Education. These require that court coordinators of district courts and county courts at law obtain 16 hours of continuing education each fiscal year.
Texas Government Code §74.106:
CONTINUING EDUCATION. (a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), a court coordinator of a district court or statutory county court shall annually complete 16 hours of continuing education as provided by rules adopted by the court of criminal appeals under Chapter 56.
Rule 6a of the Rules of Judicial Education:
Each court coordinator of a district or statutory county court shall annually complete 16 hours of continuing education, unless the court coordinator files with the Texas Center for the Judiciary, Inc., the prescribed form, signed by the judge or commissioners court of the county employing the court coordinator certifying that state and local funds are not available for the court coordinator's continuing education.
CE requirements have a regular reporting cycle, September 1 through August 31 based on the Court of Criminal Appeals’ fiscal year. Hours obtained during any fiscal year in excess of the minimum number of hours required may be applied to the following fiscal year's requirement.
Accredited CE Activities
The Rules of Judicial Education contain a list of pre-approved providers of continuing education in Rule 2c and Rule 6b. Court professionals may obtain education from these pre-approved providers without any additional approval through the Texas Center. Programs by organizations that are not on the list of providers may also be used to satisfy the requirements of Rule 6a, as long as they have prior approval of the Education Committee. Coordinators may request approval of the Education Committee by emailing the course information (i.e. provider, course title, course description, duration, etc.) to email@example.com.
The Texas Center is on the list of pre-approved providers and offers two continuing education opportunities for court professionals:
Court Professionals Conference
This is an annual, one-and-a-half day training (9 hours) that provides continuing education for court professionals at all points in their careers. Curriculum is developed annually by a subcommittee comprised of court professionals, judges, and county administrators and is meant to address current trends, substantive issues, and offer practical guidance on challenges facing the judiciary.
College for New Court Professionals
This is a three-day training intended for new court professionals. It will provide a solid foundation of skills and knowledge for successful court management. Curriculum includes caseflow management, ethics, roles and responsibilities, and informal discussion opportunities. All new court professionals, from assistant coordinators to court administrators and managers, are encouraged to attend.
In addition to the Texas Center, here are some other pre-approved providers that offer accessible training:
Tracking CE Hours
The Texas Center is named as the official registrar for continuing education for court professionals. Continuing Education may be recorded by completing the Texas Center’s Request for Continuing Education and submitting the form to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All court professionals have a user account created at www.yourhonor.com where they can monitor their CE hours. If you need assistance logging into the system, contact the Texas Center Registrar at (888) 785-8986 or email@example.com.
Any requests for a waiver from CE requirements should be made in writing to the Texas Center for the Judiciary prior to August 31.
Section (b) of §74.106 and Rule 6a provide for an exception to the CE requirement:
The court of criminal appeals may not require a court coordinator to complete continuing education instruction during a year in which the judge or commissioners court of the county employing the court coordinator certifies to the court of criminal appeals that state and local funds are not available for the court coordinator’s continuing education.
Requests for waivers should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org