As of September 2017, 619 County Judges and County Commissioners have earned their Commissioners Court Advanced Curriculum certification giving them an in-depth understanding of not only their particular office, but county government as a whole.
Commissioners Court Advanced Curriculum (CCAC) is a comprehensive educational program designed specifically for members of Commissioners Court.
“This program strengthens the credibility of our elected officials,” declared Cherokee County Commissioner Byron Underwood, chairman of the County Judges and Commissioners Association of Texas (CJCAT) County Commissioners Education Committee. “The advanced curriculum helps us learn about every aspect of county government including the duties and responsibilities of all elected officials, which helps us all excel in our official duties.” Underwood received his CCAC Completion Certificate in 2010 during his first term in office.
CCAC was adopted by the County Judges and Commissioners Association of Texas in 1992 to provide curriculum for an advanced study in county government. The program is continually updated, as foundational information provided in the original program is merged with material necessitated by legislative changes and the new and varied challenges faced by a rapidly growing state.
The development of CCAC is a combined effort of the CJCAT, V.G. Young Institute of County Government, a part of Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, and the Texas Association of Counties.
CCAC provides a comprehensive course of study as follows:
Phase I Orientation – All hours offered at LBJ School of Public Affairs
Phase II Basics – 16 hours
Phase III Advanced Instruction – 32 hours
Phase I Orientation courses currently are offered at the LBJ School of Public Affairs Seminar for Newly Elected County Judges and Commissioners, which is conducted in Austin every January following an election year. Since it is not feasible to require County Judges and Commissioners to retroactively attend the LBJ Orientation Seminar, County Judges and Commissioners who assumed office prior to Jan. 1, 1995, are permitted to substitute 16 hours of other approved instruction for the orientation course.
Phase II County Government Basics includes instruction concerning the duties and responsibilities of all county officers and departments. Phase III includes advanced instruction in the functions of county government. These courses are offered at the annual County Judges and Commissioners Association of Texas regional and state conferences and the annual V.G. Young Institute of County Government School for County Commissioners Courts.