Offender Education Programs


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News and Updates

Proposed Rule Changes

The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation proposes amendments to existing rules at 16 Texas Administrative Code (TAC), Chapter 90, Subchapter A, §90.1; Subchapter B, §90.21; Subchapter D, §90.40; Subchapter E, §§90.51-90.54; Subchapter F, §90.80; and Subchapter G, §§90.91-90.94; new rules at Subchapter A, §90.10; Subchapter B, §§90.20, 90.22-90.28; Subchapter C, §§90.30-90.34; Subchapter D, §§90.41-90.49; Subchapter E, §90.50; and Subchapter G, §90.95; and the repeal of existing rules at Subchapter A, §90.10; Subchapter B, §§90.20, 90.22-90.27; Subchapter C, §§90.30-90.34; Subchapter D, §§90.41-90.49; and Subchapter E, §90.50 regarding the Court-Ordered Education program. The proposed new rules, amendments, and repeals implement new Texas Government Code, Chapter 171, relating to the Court-Ordered Education programs, and Texas Government Code, Chapter 521, Sections 521.374 – 521.376, regarding the Drug Offender Education Program, in accordance with Senate Bills 181 and 1480, 87th Legislature, Regular Session (2021).

The proposed rules were published in the June 10, 2022, issue of the Texas Register (47 TexReg 3375). The Department will accept comments on the proposal until July 11, 2022.

The Department encourages anyone interested in the Court-Ordered Education program to review the rule proposal online. Comments may be submitted electronically on the Department’s website.

Continuing Education Requirements Suspended for Offender Education Provider Instructors

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, TDLR is suspending the Instructor teaching and continuing education requirements for Offender Education Provider Instructors license renewals.

The following renewal requirements of 90.25 have been waived:

  • Drug Offender Education Program – teaching a minimum of 4 classes and attending at least one department-sponsored continuing education seminar.
  • Alcohol Education Program for Minors – teaching a minimum of 4 classes and attending at least one department-sponsored continuing education seminar.
  • DWI Education Program – teaching a minimum of 4 classes and attending at least one department-sponsored continuing education seminar.
  • DWI Intervention Program – teaching a minimum of 2 classes and attending at least one department-sponsored continuing education seminar.

License renewals for OEP Instructors who meet all other requirements will be approved. This suspension is in effect until terminated by TDLR’s Executive Director.

Offender Education Programs May Operate at 50% of Occupancy

On June 3, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott announced the third phase of the State of Texas’ plan to safely open the economy while containing the spread of COVID-19. Offender Education Programs may now operate up to 50% of their total listed occupancy for classroom instruction. Offender Education Providers and Administrators must ensure at least 6 feet social distancing between students and instructors.

All Offender Education Programs should follow the revised minimum recommended health protocols (PDF) established by the Governor’s Strike Force to Open Texas.

Governor Approves Regulatory Suspensions to Allow Offender Education Programs to Offer Remote Classroom Instruction During the COVID-19 Pandemic

To help combat the spread of Coronavirus, TDLR requested and received authority from Governor Greg Abbott to suspend certain regulatory requirements to allow licensees of the Offender Education Program to provide more services through remote classroom instruction.

These suspensions are in effect until terminated by the Office of the Governor or until the March 13, 2020 disaster declaration is lifted or expires. In accordance with Section 418.016 of the Texas Government Code, the Office of the Governor has granted TDLR’s request to suspend the following provisions:

Rule Provisions to be Waived for All Offender Education Programs Listed

  • Waive 16 TAC §90.43(b) regarding “Each instructor must be physically present in the classroom with all of the participants for each class.”
  • Waive 16 TAC §90.48(a) and (f) applicable to Classroom Facilities and Equipment to allow for the provision of program instruction from certified providers to offenders through remote classroom instruction.

Statutory Provision Waived for Alcohol Education for Minors

  • Waive Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code §106.115(a) as it relates to the word “attend” if it would require a defendant’s physical presence in a classroom setting to receive program instruction related to an alcohol awareness, drug education, or drug and alcohol driving awareness program under this statute, or TDLR rule. Clarify that “attend” may include the provision of program instruction to offenders (and authorized persons) from certified providers via remote classroom instruction. 

Statutory Provision Waived for Drug Offender Education

  • Waive Texas Transportation Code §521.374(a) as it relates to the word “attend” if it would require an offender’s physical presence in a classroom setting to receive program instruction related to a drug education program under this statute, or TDLR rule. Clarify that “attend” may include the provision of program instruction to offenders from certified providers via remote classroom instruction.

Statutory Provision Waived for DWI Education Program

  • Waive Code of Criminal Procedure Article §42A.403(a) as it relates to the word “attend” if it would require an offender’s physical presence in a classroom setting to receive program instruction related to a DWI Education program authorized under this statute, or TDLR rule. Clarify that “attend” may include the provision of program instruction to offenders from certified providers via remote classroom instruction.

Statutory Provision Waived for DWI Intervention Program

  • Waive Code of Criminal Procedure Article 42A.404(a) as it relates to the word “attend” if it would require an offender’s physical presence in a classroom setting to receive program instruction related to a DWI Intervention Education program authorized under this statute, or TDLR rule. Clarify that “attend” may include the provision of program instruction to offenders from certified providers via remote classroom instruction.

Implementation of Remote Classroom Instruction

Offender Education programs engaging in remote classroom instruction must ensure that all hours are properly accounted for and that all curriculum delivered must be in accordance with Title 16 Texas Admin. Code, Chapter 90, Sections 90.40 and 90.41. In addition, providers must ensure the identity of the distance-learning student, adhere to the student/instructor ratio limitation, and ensure that the student has the proper tools and materials to participate in the remote classroom instruction.

Licensed providers can notify the department and provide the following information:

  • Provider name and license number; and
  • Type of method being used to:
    • deliver remote classroom instruction, including the platform, technology or program;
    • track and verify student attendance, including hours completed; and
    • deliver the end of course test (applicable programs).

Workshop Cancellations Due to COVID-19

PLEASE NOTE: Due to the current situation and safety concerns related to COVID-19 we are cancelling some workshops. Stay up-to-date on recent developments with email notifications.

COVID-19: Continuing Education Waived

TDLR continuing education requirements are waived for all individual licenses expiring in March, April, and May 2020. Licensees still need to submit their renewal applications, pay the required fees, and TDLR will check their criminal histories, but they will not need to complete any TDLR-required continuing education this licensing cycle. (§51.405, Occupations Code)

Note: TDLR is not authorized to waive continuing education requirements imposed by a certifying or credentialing entity other than TDLR. If a certifying entity requires continuing education to maintain certification, and certification is required for Texas licensure, then that continuing education must be completed. If the certifying entity waives continuing education or allows it to be completed on a delayed basis due to COVID-19, then you may follow the certifying entity’s policy.

Please check the TDLR COVID-19 webpage for the most up-to-date information.


Health Professions Transition FAQs

1. When did the transfer happen?
The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) assumed all activities relating to the Offender Education Programs including licenses and renewals, customer service and enforcement on November 1, 2017.

2. Now that the transfer is complete, will I need to get a new license issued by TDLR?
No. The license you have now, issued by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS), remains valid until its expiration date. When you renew, you will receive a TDLR license.

3. Have the rules changed?
Yes, TDLR adopted rules for all of the transferred programs. Most of the newly adopted rules are very similar, but some changes have been made. The TDLR health profession rules became effective on November 1, 2017.

4. What is going to happen with open complaints and cases?
If you filed a complaint with DSHS or had a complaint filed against your license and it was not resolved by the transfer date, TDLR assumed responsibility for the case. You should have already received notification by mail that your complaint was transferred to TDLR.

5. How do I stay informed about changes impacting me?
You have several options to stay connected:

  • Email updates - Sign up for email updates to receive notices about rules, the law, fees, examination requirements, meetings and more. Email updates are the best way for you to stay informed.
  • Meetings - TDLR’s advisory board and Commission meetings are available to watch online live or later at your convenience.
  • Facebook and Twitter - TDLR has a Facebook page and Twitter account dedicated to TDLR Health Professions.

6. Why was my license expiration date extended? Will I have the same expiration date in the future?
To ease the transition, DSHS extended the expiration date by two months for licenses previously set to expire in September, and October, and November 2017. For example, if your original expiration date was September 30, your new expiration date is November 30. If your license was extended, you will continue to renew your license in the new expiration month in the future. Licenses in counties affected by Hurricane Harvey were also extended by DSHS.

7. Will I have to renew on a different schedule?
You will renew on the same schedule unless your license expired in August, September or October 2016. Licenses expiring in those months were extended for two months to ease the transition from DSHS to TDLR. In addition, licenses in counties affected by Hurricane Harvey were also extended by DSHS. If your license was extended, you will now renew in your new expiration month for future renewals. Your license expiration date will not return to your original expiration month.

8. Why were licensing programs transferred from DSHS to TDLR?
The transfer is the result of a change to Texas law. In 2015, the Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 202, which authorized the transfer of thirteen licensing programs from the DSHS to TDLR. Phase one of this transfer was completed on October 3, 2016 when seven Health-Related Profession programs went live at TDLR.