Texas Education Code § 34.007 allows (but does not require) a district to operate “an economical public school transportation system.” That same section requires that all bus drivers must be certified in accordance with Texas Department of Public Safety rules. Employees who drive regular bus routes must be certified by the DPS or be currently enrolled in an approved school bus safety education course. Tex. Transp. Code § 521.022(e). Because some employees who are not regular bus route drivers, especially extra-curricular coaches, must sometimes transport students, it is important to know if they must also hold school bus driver certification. The answer to the question is found by a combination of the Texas Transportation Code and the Texas Administrative Code.

A Jefferson ISD teacher was arrested on a charge of improper relationship with a male student following an investigation by Jefferson ISD Police. Shannon Griffin, an English and theater teacher at Jefferson High School, was arrested by Jefferson ISD Police on Feb. 8 and booked into the Marion County Jail, Jefferson ISD Superintendent Rob Barnwell said on Wednesday. view article arw

The Mount Pleasant Independent School District said that it is conducting an investigation regarding the arrest of a district teacher for a first degree felony. According to a statement released by the district, because of privacy laws, there will be no information released on the investigation until the completion of the investigation. view article arw

A lawsuit filed against Lewisville ISD claims that the school district’s at-large voting system for trustees denies Hispanic, African American and Asian voters a fair opportunity to elect school board members of their choice. Brewer Storefront filed suit in federal court on Feb. 12 on behalf of Frank Vaughan against Lewisville ISD and its trustees, alleging that the school district’s election system violates the Voting Rights Act of 1965 because it denies fair representation to voters of color. The suit seeks to have the current process of electing school board members at-large to be declared in violation of federal law. It also seeks to halt any future school board elections under the current system. view article arw

Kilgore ISD trustees and district lawyers plan to discuss their options after the 6th Court of Appeals ruled Monday that taxpayers wrongly were denied homestead exemptions in 2015. Kilgore Superintendent Andy Baker, who joined the district in January, said his familiarity with the 2016 lawsuit by homeowners Sheila Anderson and Darlene and John Axberg is limited.  “However, please know that the original action by Kilgore ISD several years back to repeal our Local Optional Homestead Exemption was not made without a lot of discussion as to what our school board thought was best for our schools,” Baker wrote in an email response to questions. “I am attempting to get our KISD school board members together to discuss options available to the district as we look to move forward.” view article arw

The Donna School District is being sued by a former employee. Roy Padilla, the former police chief for Donna I.S.D., says he was wrongfully terminated and now is suing them. According to the lawsuit, Padilla claims Donna I.S.D. terminated him in 2017 for what he alleges was due to his race and age. view article arw

The baseball program at Huntington ISD is still on pause while allegations of hazing and possible assault continues to be investigated. The board of trustees released the following statement on Thursday night: view article arw

A former Whitesboro Independent School District educator has been arrested for online solicitation of a minor. Dallas station WFAA reported Thursday that Jim Cude, who previously worked for Whitesboro ISD for 16 years, was arrested after he allegedly sent “sexually graphic messages” to an undercover police officer posing as a 13-year-old boy on a dating app. Cude currently serves as the band director for North Mesquite High School, but has been placed on administrative leave, WFAA reports. view article arw

The father of an eighth-grade student who was described by classmates as most likely to shoot up a school has filed a lawsuit in what's believed to be the first use of David's Law, an anti-cyberbullying Texas statute signed into law in 2017. The law was named after David Molak, an Alamo Heights teen who committed suicide in 2016 after being cyberbullied. The alleged bullies are several unnamed students at Tex Hill Middle School in Northeast ISD, the lawsuit said. Derek Rothschild is seeking $50,000 damages and attorney fees. view article arw

A San Antonio man is suing his son's middle school classmates and their parents, accusing the students of starting online rumors suggesting his teenage son was planning a school shooting. Derek Rothschild's lawsuit seeks to unmask the unnamed Tex Hill Middle School students who spread the gossip on social media in January, the San Antonio Express-News reported. It's the first lawsuit to invoke David's Law, named for a Texas high school student who killed himself in 2016 after being cyberbullied. view article arw

A group of Latino voters is suing top state officials who they allege unlawfully conspired to violate their constitutional rights by singling them out for investigation and removal from the voter rolls because they are foreign-born.  Filed in a Corpus Christi-based federal court on Friday night, the suit alleges that the decision by state officials to advise counties to review the citizenship status of tens of thousands of registered voters it flagged using flawed data runs contrary to the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and the federal Voting Rights Act because it imposes additional requirements to register to vote on naturalized citizens. view article arw

A suspended Palestine Junior High School teacher accused of having an improper relationship with a student has been arrested. The Palestine Police Department arrested Lauren Stewart after a joint investigation with Palestine ISD confirmed inappropriate actions on the part of the teacher involving text messages and an off-campus relationship, according to a statement from the school district. view article arw

A teacher at Palestine ISD is suspended after allegedly having an inappropriate relationship with a student. The identity of the teacher has been released by the school district; Lauren Stewart has been arrested by Palestine police on charges of having an improper relationship between educator and student. view article arw

For the second time in the month, a Navasota ISD teacher has been accused of improper conduct with a student. The teacher is accused of sending “improper electronic communications” in early 2018 to the student who is no longer enrolled in the school district, according to Superintendent Stu Musik. He also stated the two never had a physical relationship. view article arw

A former coach with the Corsicana Independent School District has been charged with having improper relationships with multiple students. Corsicana ISD Police arrested Jackie Ray Grace Jr., better known as Cody Grace, before noon Saturday. Grace, 39, was booked into the Navarro County Jail on three charges of improper relationship between educator/student, according to jail records. view article arw

An Indiana school superintendent is facing charges of identity fraud after authorities said she used her own insurance to help a sick student.  Dr. Casey Smitherman, the superintendent at Elwood Community Schools in central Indiana, took a 15-year-old student to the doctor and used her insurance and her son's name to get him a prescription, according to court documents.  view article arw

The Texas Education Agency is investigating possible open meetings violations by some Houston ISD trustees last year when they engaged in private discussions that led to the abrupt ouster of Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan. TEA officials notified the district Tuesday that an investigation would begin following "multiple complaints" made to the agency over the vote to replace Lathan with former district superintendent Abelardo Saavedra, according to a letter sent to Lathan and HISD board President Diana Dávila. The Houston Chronicle reviewed a portion of the letter outlining the allegations. view article arw

The federal judge presiding over a Title IX lawsuit filed against Carthage ISD has denied part of the district’s countersuit because he says the district failed to submit a response to plaintiffs. It’s the latest update to the lawsuit filed by a mother and daughter who say that the district failed to stop students from spreading around a nude video of the daughter secretly recorded by a Carthage football player — and that the girl was subsequently harassed while at school because of the video. view article arw

A Hispanic female alleges she was treated less favorably because of her race when she was employed by a school district. Santy Enriquez filed a complaint on Dec. 28 in the Harris County District Court against Houston Independent School District alleging violation of the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act. According to the complaint, the plaintiff is a naturalized citizen originally from Mexico. The suit states she has three degrees and taught at HISD from 1997 to 2014. view article arw

Seeking to preserve a politically-charged state law that bars governmental entities from doing business with contractors who support a boycott of Israel, Texas officials are mobilizing this month at the courthouse and the Capitol. In legal filings and legislative proposals, they argue that the law should be applied to companies and not individuals. But some legal experts say the strategy may run afoul of recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings that expand certain corporate speech rights, raising questions about whether shutting out companies that support the Israel boycott is constitutionally kosher. view article arw

Following a voting rights challenge to the way it elects its school board members, Richardson ISD has agreed to adopt a new election system that could give voters of color more say in who represents them. After months of negotiations, the North Texas district agreed to switch from an at-large system, with all of the district’s voters able to vote in each race, to a hybrid approach with two at-large districts and five single-member districts. Voters of color will make up a majority of the electorate in at least two of those districts. view article arw

A former Kennedale ISD custodian was arrested Tuesday following a report of a former district employee inappropriately behaving in front of a minor student. Since an allegation of inappropriate behavior was made December 20, Kennedale ISD, Kennedale Police and state agencies have been investigating Lewis Wayne Rawlings, a 70-year-old white man who at the time was a custodian with the school district, according to Kennedale ISD. view article arw

Cypress-Fairbanks ISD refuted on Saturday the characterization that it had settled a lawsuit involving a student expelled after she sat during the Pledge of Allegiance. District spokeswoman Leslie Francis said the district was dismissed from the case filed by India Landry, an African-American senior forced to leave Windfern High School last fall. Landry alleged that her expulsion was racially motivated and violated her constitutional rights. view article arw

A Florida man is facing charges for allegedly conning the Crowley Independent School District out of nearly $2 million. Donald Conkright was arrested in South Florida earlier this month and charged with wire fraud. According to court documents, Crowley ISD got an email in October that appeared to be from one of its regular construction vendors, Steele & Freeman. The email included the name of one of Steele & Freeman’s accountants and asked the district to update its banking information for wire transfer payments. view article arw

A photo surfaced Wednesday of a noose that was tied from a staircase at Weatherford High School. Parents said the Weatherford School District did not tell parents about the incident, which happened in December, and that the school tried to hide what happened.

A Hart ISD employee has been placed on paid administrative leave while officials investigate allegations of an inappropriate relationship with a student. view article arw

Law enforcement and the Hart Independent School District are investigating into a possible inappropriate relationship between a teacher and a District student. According to a statement from Hart ISD Superintendent David Cox, the district recently received information indicating an employee may have solicited and/or engaged in an inappropriate relationship with a student. Per customary personnel practices, the District began an internal investigation into the matter. view article arw

A change of venue is being sought for an 18-year-old charged with capital murder in the fatal shooting of 10 people at a Texas high school. view article arw

An attorney for the teen accused of killing several Santa Fe High School classmates wants his client’s trial moved to another county. Attorney Nicholas Poehl filed a motion for a change of venue on Tuesday. view article arw

A Clear Creek ISD coach "conducted himself inappropriately" and has resigned from the district, according to a letter sent to parents Jan. 7. Coach Ryan Pearson is no longer teaching at Seabrook Intermediate and an investigation involving his actions is underway, according to the letter. view article arw

The dismissed case of a former Spring Independent School District teacher who claims he was suspended after he reported alleged drug dealing on campus is revived and headed back to a Harris County court. A Texas 14th Court of Appeals three-judge panel reversed Harris County 55th District Court's grant of summary judgment on the former teacher's claims about alleged drug dealing by another teacher and remanded the case. The Appeals Court also affirmed the lower court's decision in the jurisdictional plea of two school officials and its decision to grant summary judgment in favor of the district on the former teacher's takings claim. view article arw

Is Robin Hood school funding broken?

January 0907:45 AM
 

In English folklore, Robin Hood is the hero; stealing from the rich, giving to the poor. But in Texas, we use his name to describe one way we fund education.  And some folks think Robin Hood is a villain.  “We cannot live with this.  Not one more year. Not one more day,” Plano ISD Board Member David Stolle said at a recent board meeting. view article arw

As construction continues at Fort Bend ISD’s James Reese Career and Technical Center where historic human remains were discovered in February, the project is costing more money for the district while the case is tied up in court. According to legal documents, in May when the district filed a petition seeking court approval to exhume the bodies of the 95 individuals believed to have been indentured servants in the convict leasing system, the petition specifically stated the district was not seeking removal of any dedication of the land for cemetery purposes. view article arw

A former Cypress-Fairbanks ISD student who was expelled for refusing to recite the Pledge of Allegiance remains embroiled in a federal lawsuit after she settled with the school's principal and Texas’ third-largest school district was dismissed from the case. view article arw

A Mexia Independent School District teacher was placed under arrest on a human trafficking charge, after she tried to traffick a minor child to multiple men online in Morocco, McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara said. 37-year-old Amber Parker taught 8th grade reading in the ISD, according to its website. view article arw