As school districts around the Greater Houston area are growing, competition for recruiting highly qualified teachers has stiffened. Districts, such as Alvin, Friendswood and Pearland ISDs, have all been affected by increased teacher turnover, according to retention data from the Texas Education Agency, and have dug deep to raise teacher salaries in an effort to stifle poaching. view article arw

Both Hays and San Marcos CISDs saw increases in their budgets for fiscal year 2017-18, due in part to salary raises both school boards voted to approve. Although both school districts had budget deficits, healthy savings accounts are helping to cover expenditures. “We did cut the deficit [of the] budget down in half,” SMCISD Assistant Superintendent Karen Griffith said at a July school board meeting. “I wanted the board to realize that we are working on that.” view article arw

Houston Independent School District announced Monday that the head of its non-profit foundation would also serve as the district's chief development officer and promoted a governmental relations director to its chief lobbying position. Ashlea Turner, who worked with the Greater Houston Partnership before joining the district, will serve as Houston ISD's chief governmental relations and strategy officer, and Ann Best Scott will continue in her role as executive director of the Houston ISD Foundation while serving as the district's chief development officer. view article arw

The Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA), which facilitates the Texas Teacher of the Year program, has named Texas’ top teachers for 2018. Marissa Torres, a third-grade teacher from White Settlement ISD, is the 2018 Texas Elementary Teacher of the Year, and Tara Bordeaux, a media arts teacher from Austin ISD, is the 2018 Texas Secondary Teacher of the Year. Bordeaux was chosen to represent the state as Texas Teacher of the Year in the National Teacher of the Year competition. view article arw

A Lanier High School media arts teacher will now represent Texas in the National Teacher of the Year competition. On Friday, Tara Bordeaux, learned she was anointed the 2018 Texas Teacher of the Year during the awards luncheon at the Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin. Both state-level winners will receive a cash award and a commemorative trophy. view article arw

The Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA) has announced its 2018 teachers of the year, and one of our very own is on the list. Tara Bordeaux, a media arts teacher from Austin ISD, was chosen as the 2018 Texas Secondary Teacher of the Year and will represent the state as Texas Teacher of the Year in the National Teacher of the Year competition, TASA announced Friday at an awards luncheon at the Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin. view article arw

Four area teachers were recognized at the Texas Association of School Administrators 2018 Teacher of the Year luncheon Friday at Austin. Among them was Gary Strickland, a Coleman High School teacher, who was one of three finalists for Secondary Teacher of the Year. Tara Bordeaux, a media arts teacher from Austin ISD, was named Secondary Teacher of the Year, and Marissa Torres, a third-grade teacher from White Settlement ISD, was named Elementary Teacher of the Year, according to a news release from TASA.  view article arw

Leading Midland ISD’s communication efforts will be its new executive director of communications, Lacy Sperry. Sperry comes to the district with more than a decade of experience developing and implementing internal and external communication strategies, according to the district. view article arw

Two teachers at Tivy High School in Kerrville have been accused of participating in improper student-teacher relationships, district officials said in an email to parents Wednesday evening. "We regret to inform you that Kerville ISD has recently received two separate and unrelated allegations of improper teacher/student relationships at Tivy High School," said Superintendent Mark J. Foust. view article arw

KERRVILLE, Texas - Parents received a letter Thursday from Kerrville Independent School District Superintendent Mark Foust, letting them know that on two separate occasions, high school teachers were accused of having inappropriate relationships with students.  "I was a little shocked, but, like I said, I wasn't real quick to jump to conclusions,” said Krystal Rios, who is a parent to a freshman and sophomore at the high school. “These are pretty serious allegations, and I wouldn't want to spread it any further or make up any stories or start any rumors.” view article arw

The Texas Education Agency is warning of a phishing email targeting teachers and school districts across the state. The false email claims to come from TEA and the Association of Texas Professional Educators, inviting educators to an all-expenses-paid seminar in Austin and asking to follow several links to register. view article arw

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) and the Association of Texas Professional Educators (ATPE) on Thursday issued a warning about a phishing email scam directed at teachers and school systems across the state. The email, which bears the ATPE logo and an outdated TEA logo, comes from a non-TEA email address and appears to target teachers with the following message: view article arw

Amid increasing scrutiny from top state officials of teachers accused of soliciting romantic relationships from students, the number of such cases has jumped for the ninth year in a row. In the one-year period that ended Sept. 1, the Texas Education Agency opened 302 cases against public teachers who have been accused of having improper relationships with students, a 36 percent increase from the year before. The most recent data show the biggest one-year jump in almost a decade. view article arw

In July, Brad Schnautz became Grapevine-Colleyville ISD’s new deputy superintendent. He brings more than 15 years of educational experience to the school district. Schnautz previously served as superintendent for Lexington ISD in Texas, located between Austin and Bryan-College Station, with a student body of about 1,000 students. Prior to this he was in Magnolia ISD in Magnolia, Texas, for nine years serving in various capacities.  view article arw

Purple Heart Elementary School teacher Christina Castaños, who was named Region 19 Elementary Teacher of the Year, represented her school, Team SISD and the region at the Texas Teacher of the Year ceremony on Sept. 15 in Austin. “There are so many good teachers out there. It’s amazing to be chosen out of that prestigious group,” Castaños said. “I am proud to have represented our city, our district and all of El Paso’s districts. view article arw

A former Mesquite ISD teacher's aid who was accused of faking cancer has been indicted. Kevin MaBone faces a charge of theft with property after he accepted a car and money that students and staff donated to him because they believed he was sick. MaBone worked as a teacher's aide for students with behavioral issues at Wilkinson Middle School. view article arw

Investigations into improper teacher-student relationships jumped 36 percent in the 2017 fiscal year, records obtained by show. The Texas Education Agency opened 302 investigations into improper relationships in FY2017. It was at least the seventh year in a row that number has increased. view article arw

A Patsy Sommer Elementary School teacher who is no stranger to accolade received a little surprise Wednesday afternoon. Talented and gifted educator Revathi Balakrishnan sat beside fellow teachers in the school library as representatives walked in and presented her with the Horace Mann Award for Teacher Excellence. view article arw

Burleson County jurors convicted a former Snook High School teacher's aide accused of having sexual relationships with her former students after about two hours of deliberation Wednesday.  Deanna Kathryn Lara was initially arrested in December 2015 and charged with two counts of improper relationship with a student. Lara was released on bail and resigned from her position at Snook High School before administrators could place her on leave, according to a previous article in The Eagle.  view article arw

Young college graduates have a lot less incentive to become K-12 teachers in the United States than in other countries, according to the latest data from the Organization for Economic Development and Cooperation. While American educators out-earn teachers in other countries, they trail those with similar education levels in other professions more than teachers in any other OECD country. That was part of the OECD's annual "Education at a Glance" report—a nearly 500-page compendium of educational indicators across more than two dozen industrialized countries, which was released this morning. view article arw

Two Amarillo ISD teachers have been named finalists for 2017 Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST). According to the Texas Education Agency, Nichole Bennett, who teaches 8th grade mathematics and Algebra I at Bowie Middle School, was named as one of five 2017 Texas finalists in secondary mathematics. view article arw

Brownsville Independent School District trustees voted 4-3 Tuesday afternoon to suspend any changes to BISD’s self-funded healthcare plan pending further review by the district’s Employee Benefits Committee. The decision came at a special called board meeting after the insurance committee discussed proposed changes to the plan that would have taken effect Oct. 1 and raised premiums in some cases. view article arw

BROWNSVILLE — About 20 employees of Brownsville Independent School District gathered across the street from the BISD Administrative Building to protest increased health insurance premiums.  Although the BISD Board of Trustees approved a three percent pay raise for all employees earlier this year, the “math does not check out” when the cost of the premiums are considered, said Alberto Alegria, president and executive director of the Texas Valley Educators Association.  “ When you giveth with one hand and taketh with the other, that’s a reverse process Robin Hood, the rich taking from the poor,” Alegria said. “We’re out here trying to look out for people.” view article arw

Three weeks before the high school football season kicks off, an administrative assistant at Lake Travis High School is juggling phone calls while season ticket holders wait to learn their seat assignments. Lake Travis played its 2017 season opener in front of an audience that included those watching on Fox Sports Southwest, the first time that the University Interscholastic League (or UIL) allowed live broadcasts of Friday night games.  The Cavaliers are a powerhouse. They won their sixth state title in 2016. In 2011 they became the first team in the history of Texas high school football to win five consecutive state championships. view article arw

Lacy Sperry received unanimous board approval during tonight’s board meeting. She is scheduled to begin in her new role on Monday, September 18, 2017. Mrs. Sperry is an experienced communications professional with more than 10 years of robust experience in private sector. She has a proven track record as a leader in corporate ommunications across the state of Texas, most especially in developing internal and external communication strategies, advocacy and managing all components of a high-functioning communications team. view article arw

Communities In Schools of Greater Central Texas recently held its second annual Back to School Supply Drive to collect needed supplies and other accessories for thousands of students throughout the school year. With assistance from local businesses and civic organizations, CIS was able to collect 60 backpacks stuffed with school supplies and many large boxes and bags filled with notebook paper, pocket folders, composition notebooks, glue sticks, bottled glue, pencil sharpeners, markers, crayons, pencils, pencil pouches, pencil boxes and other supplies. view article arw

Read and share - js - After an outcry erupted from thousands of active and retired teachers and other school employees over cost increases imposed on school retirees by the Legislature this spring, lawmakers in their summer special session ponied up an additional $212 million to scale back the increases. The Teacher Retirement System board was given the task of spending the money to maximize the benefit of the extra funding for retirees, and the board on September 1 formally approved a new benefit and rate structure accordingly. The new rates and benefits take effect in January 2018. view article arw

For the past four years, Kyle DeBeer has been the go-to guy for public relations when it comes to Belton ISD. Graduating from Colorado College in 2003 with a bachelor’s degree in Classics-History-Politics, DeBeer worked in politics for about a decade before joining Belton ISD in June of 2013. Leaving Belton is a bittersweet feeling for DeBeer, who is moving to Waco in order to be closer to his wife and son. view article arw

Though he was only there a short time, Colin Chichurka made quite an impression on the students, faculty and community of Petersburg. "The community was already surrounding him and very excited with the direction our band was heading," Superintendent Drew Howard said. Petersburg is one of three schools its size in the region with a band, and they take great pride in their Buffalo Band. "Our band program is a big part of our school, a lot of involvement," Howard said. view article arw

Both Hawkins ISD and Cushing ISD are looking into a situation which unfolded Friday evening following the high school football game. Hawkins fell to Cushing 22-20 after a tense match-up all evening long. After the game ended, both teams met for the traditional sportsman-like "congratulations." This is when the altercation reportedly began. view article arw

It’s first day of school for hundreds of kids and teachers throughout several Houston-area school districts Monday despite many still recovering from Hurricane Harvey. Spring Branch ISD parent volunteers decided to step up and put together a high-end clothing drive just for their staff and teachers whose homes flooded. view article arw

 Natalie Shanks and Rachel Kaiser have at least three things in common professionally. For starters, they’re both Northeastern State University graduates who, as young 20-something teachers, were lured south by the higher pay of a Texas school district. Now they’ve both come home to Oklahoma to work at Broken Arrow Public Schools. view article arw

Jerry Albright, the new chief investment officer of the Texas Teacher Retirement System, Austin, named the executives who will assist him in managing the $139.7 billion fund. Mr. Albright succeeded T. Britton Harris III as the Texas Teacher CIO on Aug. 1 after Mr. Harris assumed the role of president, CEO and CIO of the University of Texas Investment Management Co., Austin, which manages $39.4 billion in assets from UT and Texas A&M. view article arw

DACA: Impact on the classroom

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Taking away DACA will also take some teachers out of the classroom. At a "Defend DACA" rally Tuesday night, numerous educators spoke up about how ending the program won't only impact individuals but entire communities.  The Texas State Teachers Association says about 2,000 Texas teachers are DACA recipients -- also known as DACA-mented. Some of those educators teach in Austin -- but when DACA goes away they won't be allowed to stay. view article arw

On Thursday, Pflugerville ISD announced it adjusted its substitute teacher pay structure to include an increase for those individuals with teacher certifications or long-term responsibilities. The district increased the rate of pay to $95, up from the $85 per day rate from the 2016-17 school year. The daily rate for non-certified substitute teachers is still $85 per day. view article arw