The Hearne Independent School District is getting a second chance. Wednesday the Texas Education Agency reversed its decision to completely take over the struggling district. "One of the things we want the parents to know is that this district is entering a level of stability. I think it will be important to improve the educational process for our students. So now the work, we have to work on the work. That work is improving student performance throughout the district. So we will begin next week with our summer school program. We're going to run an extensive summer school program this year," said Dr. Adrain Johnson, Hearne ISD Superintendent. view article arw

Hundreds of students will be looking for a new school over the summer since the Christian Academy of San Antonio is closing its doors. Even though parents knew this was going to happen a year ago it's still a bitter pill to swallow. Students are not cheering for the end of the school year. view article arw

The Hearne school district recognized teachers and staff Thursday for their years of employment and impact on students. Administrators handed out awards for six teachers and staff who have been with the district five years, three for those who have been with the district 10 years, and one for each employee who has been with the district 15, 20, 25 and 30 years. An award for elementary teacher of the year went to Sarah Patterson and secondary teacher of the year went to Amanda Puryear. view article arw

Some Cypress Fairbanks Independent School District students will have the opportunity to graduate with a high school diploma and an associates of science degree. At a recent school board meeting, the administration provided the board with information on a pilot initiative in partnership with Lone Star College CyFair, the College Academy, which will provide 2017-18 freshman students at Cypress Lakes High School with an opportunity to graduate with a high school diploma and an associates of science degree. view article arw

At the center of our district’s Learning Model, one of our Guiding Documents that directs all we do in LISD, is “focus on student learning.” After all, the whole reason our district exists is to provide an education to the children in our boundaries. While our teachers and staff have done an outstanding job over the years working to foster a challenging, supportive and effective learning experience, we recognize the benefit of taking a step back every so often to ensure our many educational pieces are creating a cohesive puzzle. Our last official audit was conducted nearly 20 years ago under Superintendent Tom Glenn. Since then, we have experienced incredible population growth in our area, as well as great strides in the teaching and assessment arenas.  view article arw

The Hearne ISD Board of Trustees and Superintendent will not be removed from office according to a decision by the Texas Education Agency. On May 17 Hearne ISD officials met with Commissioner Mike Morath to review the school district’s progress and to respond to the Special Accreditation Investigation. view article arw

All three Wichita Falls ISD high schools graduation ceremonies are this Saturday at the MPEC. Rider High School seniors are set to walk the stage at 10:00 a.m., Wichita Falls High School will follow at 2:00 p.m. and Hirschi High School's ceremony will begin at 5:00 p.m.  view article arw

The Corpus Christi Independent School District is taking the next step to see if it should become a "District of innovation." At a CCISD public hearing that began just after 6 p.m., the school board voted to create a special committee.  The group will study the plan CCISD would adopt if it does become a "District Of Innovation," then bring a proposal back to the school board for consideration.  The designation would give the district more flexibility on things like class size and hiring uncertified teachers.  view article arw

It was a smart move by Dallas ISD to double the number of early-college high schools next year. Kids are scrambling to get into these programs because they get a head start on college, tuition-free. It's the kind of students-first approach aiming to make students more likely to graduate and find jobs that can lift them out of poverty. That's why it's alarming that some board trustees appear headed this week to scuttle a proposed District of Innovation plan. The designation allows school districts to  seek exemptions from some state rules. One change DISD could benefit from: more freedom in hiring industry professionals for its hard-to-fill dual-credit and career and technical, or CTE, classrooms.  view article arw

On Thursday, the Dallas ISD Board of Trustees will decide whether to pursue designation as a District of Innovation. The trustees will show, by their vote, if they support the district's successful programming and, more important, our students. The Texas Legislature passed a law in 2015 to allow traditional public school districts to pursue the designation, which gives these districts much of the flexibility currently available to charter schools, involving items such as school start date, class size, compulsory attendance and teacher certification requirements. More than 200 Texas school districts are today designated as DOI, including El Paso, San Antonio, Austin, Fort Worth, Plano and Richardson. view article arw

Mike Morath, the Texas education commissioner, has completed the state takeover of the Southside Independent School District, appointing a five-member board of managers to replace the district’s board of trustees, officials said Friday.  Morath had the option to replace Superintendent Mark E. Eads but announced in a letter to the seven ousted trustees that Eads will continue in his role.  “We will continue to move the district forward and we are all truly excited about the future of Southside,” Eads said in a written statement. view article arw

On Monday, the nonprofit group Children at Risk released its list of its top public schools in Texas. The Texas nonprofit analyzed 438 public schools in the Austin-area. Round Rock ISD schools took most of the slots for Top 5 elementary and middle schools. When it comes to high schools, Austin ISD had four schools in the Top 10. Three charter schools, Harmony Science Academy, NYOS Charter and Chaparral Star Academy also topped the high school list. view article arw

The nonprofit Children at Risk announced Monday the top performing schools and gold ribbon schools in the Alamo City.  The organization said it analyzed more than 500 public schools in the area.  More than 30 schools were recognized during Monday’s event. But president and CEO of Children at Risk Dr. Bob Sanborn said the point of the rankings is also meant to help schools that aren’t performing as well. view article arw

Story Elementary fifth-grader Carl Hu recently had a very memorable birthday. On May 5, his birthday, he got the news that out of hundreds of submissions from students across North Texas, his story won the Explore Horizons Young Writer’s Award. “It was a pretty cool birthday present,” Hu said. Explore Horizons specializes in after-school tutoring in reading, math and writing, as well as STAAR test preparation. Founder Bill Mills began the company in London in 2001 as a father of three and school board chairman. In 2013, he expanded his business to the U.S. and now has five tutoring centers in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. view article arw

Congrats to the Class of 2017

May 2307:45 AM
 

There will be 485 Lufkin Panthers who will graduate at 8 p.m. Friday at the Abe, and it will be the last time I’ll have the honor to address them as a whole. They were freshmen when I started my position at Lufkin ISD and I’ve had the privilege of getting to watch them mature into young adults with their dreams and hopes now in grasp. The 2017 graduates are an impressive group, and here are just a few reasons why: Five students received a Smith-Hutson Scholarship — one student will attend Sam Houston State University, three will attend Stephen F. Austin State University and one Angelina College. The scholarship fully covers tuition, books and fees. view article arw

Applications? Check. College tours? Check. The college preparation to-do list grows as high school students approach graduation, and one large item on the list is the SAT or ACT test. “Most colleges and universities accept either an SAT or an ACT [score] as part of the college application process,” said Jennifer Bailey, Leander ISD interim chief communications officer. “Students should review the college or university website of schools they are interested in to get a feel of the average SAT/ACT score for students at their college or university.” view article arw

BROWNWOOD, Texas - A Texas Education Agency investigation into a small Mills County school district revealed that teachers falsified course records.  The TEA initiated the probe after receiving two complaints in 2015 on how the Mullin Independent School District operated a school inside a Brownwood juvenile facility. Mullin began providing educational services to G4S during the 2013-2014 school year to increase its enrollment, according to TEA.  G4S is a youth treatment center in Brownwood that houses mostly juvenile probationers. Mullin Oaks is inside the G4S facility. view article arw

For most of her high school career, Madison Mau knew she wanted to attend the University of Texas at Austin, and practically everyone at her tiny rural high school was certain she could do it. Mau is the valedictorian of her 10-student graduating class at Fayetteville High, on the west end of this 258-person town between Austin and Houston. She has earned perfect grades and compiled a list of extracurriculars too long to publish in full — Future Farmers of America president, National Honor Society president, class president, student council president and cross country runner, to name a few.  view article arw

The New STAAR Report Card

May 2208:30 AM
 

The Texas Education Agency publishes STAAR report cards for all students every year. These STAAR report cards are often referred to as Confidential Student Reports (CSR). To improve communication and transparency with educators and families, TEA has conducted an overhaul of the STAAR report card.  The goal of the redesign is to create a family-friendly report on student progress, specifically highlighting growth and improvement as much as proficiency, while giving parents concrete tools to help with student learning.  It will be available starting in June 2017. view article arw

As I travel across our "612 Square Miles of Excellence," I am continuously amazed by the level of talent I encounter with each and every visit. It is clearly evident that we are surrounded by exceptional students, outstanding employees, supportive parents, a visionary Board of Trustees and a community that truly values the importance of education. With only eight school days remaining in the 2016-17 school year, we have much to celebrate, and we are extremely proud to showcase the most recent accomplishments of our outstanding students and staff. view article arw

Commissioner of Education Mike Morath announced today that the Texas Education Agency (TEA) has launched a pilot project for six learning programs targeted at educators within select districts across the state. The pilot is part of a broader initiative in the agency’s shift towards impact-focused training and will help to form the future of professional development in Texas. Nearly 400 educators will participate in the pilot, which is designed to provide an innovative way for teachers and school board members to demonstrate proficiency of their skills and acquire micro-credentials (or digital badges). Educators who complete micro-credentials through the program will also be eligible to earn Continuing Professional Education (CPE) hours for their efforts.  view article arw

 In a statement emailed late Thursday night, Rogers ISD admitted that when Allyson Talbott's correct midterm grade was accounted for, she would have been the high school Valedictorian. However, despite knowing that, the district will not award her the position. Instead of making Talbott Valedictorian, the district changed its mind and decided to use final grades instead of midterm grades, as it typically does, for the class ranks. When the final grades were calculated, Talbott had dropped back to number two -- with the other student being number one. "Now that the rank was proven to be me as number one, they all of the sudden are basing Valedictorian and Salutatorian off final grades, which is against school policy," Talbott wrote in an email. view article arw

Milwaukee has the nation's longest-running, publicly-funded voucher program.  For 27 years it has targeted African-American kids from low-income families, children who otherwise could not afford the tuition at a private or religious school.  The vouchers are issued by what's known as the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program. Some some see vouchers as a beacon of hope in a public school district where student achievement lags far behind the state average, and where only 20 percent of students are proficient in English language arts and fewer than 15 percent in math. view article arw

They were picked because they are considered the best at what they do. Rita Pierson, a longtime teacher from Texas and public speaker, said every child deserves a champion — an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection and insists that they become the best that they can possibly be. It was efforts like these that were displayed yesterday during the annual Teacher Appreciation Luncheon in San Benito. view article arw

The status "Improvement required" designated by the state for Nacogdoches ISD and several of its campuses doesn't discourage the new assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction. Sami Kensey told East Texas she actually thrives on the opportunity to turn districts around. Kinsey comes from Bastrop, where she earned Region 13 Secondary Principal of the Year for 2014. She's coined a phrase for a passion she brings to East Texas. view article arw

Georgetown ISD officials want to hear from the community as they create a new way to measure student success. "We do so much more than just one standardized test on one given day," said Georgetown Superintendent Fred Brent.  Public school districts are required by the state to administer the STAAR test each year to measure skills like reading and math.  But Brent told KVUE there's more to look at. "I don't know that anyone really understands what the STAAR test does and what it measures. I'm a father of three kids in our schools, it doesn't tell me what I want to know about my children," said Brent. "Everything is measured by just one simple test and, quite honestly, we feel like it's driving a car with only one instrument on the dashboard." view article arw

 WFAA visited an elementary school in the Eagle Mountain Saginaw ISD, where kindergartners and first graders now have four 15-minute recess periods a day. Ask just about any kid on the playground at Elkins Elementary and they'll tell you that recess is their favorite part of school. Lucky for these kids, they get to do it four times a day. "Well it's super fun!" first-grade student Emma Hanschen, 6, said. It turns out, it's more than just fun. It might very well be transformative, too. view article arw

Erik Rodriguez will lead his fellow classmates as valedictorian of Overton High School’s Class of 2017 during commencement ceremonies scheduled for 2 p.m. June 4 at Kilgore College’s Dodson Auditorium. Rodriguez is the son of Maggie and Jose Delgado. He has been accepted into the engineering program at Texas A&M University where he will major in electrical engineering.  view article arw

The Northside Independent School District is getting its own STEM formation school. STEM, which stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics, is coming to Jones Middle School. The district's superintendent discussed how the STEM formation program will impact some of its staff and students. view article arw

Plano Academy High School hosted its first "national signing day" Wednesday – but instead of highlighting athletes committing to college teams, the focus was on seniors committed to science, math and engineering majors. Ten seniors from Plano Academy and Plano Senior High School declared their commitment to colleges, including Texas A&M University, Texas Tech University, the University of Texas at Austin and Iowa State University. view article arw

As the legislative session draws to a close in less than two weeks, bills that would reduce state standardized test requirements in Texas are nearing the finish the line. view article arw

The Ector County Independent School District Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday featured a number of special presentations honoring students, administrators and educators. George H.W. Bush New Tech Odessa, Permian and Odessa high schools announced their top 10 students in order of graduation with George H.W. Bush New Tech Odessa going first at 7 p.m. May 25 at the Wagner Noel Performing Arts Center; Odessa High School at 8:30 p.m. May 26 at Ratliff Stadium; and Permian High School at 8:30 p.m. May 27, also at Ratliff. view article arw

Good Information here!  The Texas Education Agency said it updated its report card to improve communication and transparency between teachers and families about the state-mandated standardized tests, which are used in Texas public primary and secondary schools to assess a student's achievements and knowledge learned in his or her grade level.The confusing labels have been replaced with terms easier to understand, officials said. view article arw

Superintendent Dr. Royce Avery with the support of the Board of Trustees will hold seven community meetings to discuss the future of Manor ISD’s programs at the High School level. The first meeting is tonight at 6 p.m. at the Manor ISD Board Room at 10335 US Hwy 290 E. Manor, TX, 78653. view article arw

Marlin Independent School District officials say the outlook for performance on this year’s State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness is two times better than last year, based on preliminary data from the state presented at Tuesday’s school board meeting. The data look only at how fifth- and eighth-grade students did on this year’s first round of STAAR exams in March, compared to how they did as fourth- and seventh-grade students last year, said Van LeJeune, the district’s teaching and learning director. view article arw