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Proposed lesson plans could improve student performance and help teachers, Texas education officials say. Not all district leaders and education advocates are convinced. view article arw

Third-graders in the Fort Worth Independent School District are still testing slightly below the curve of pre-pandemic levels in math and reading, four years after COVID-19 sent the education system into a whirlwind, according to spring state test scores released on Friday by the Texas Education Agency. The State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR, scores show that 29% of third-graders in Fort Worth ISD are meeting grade level in math compared to the 32% seen in 2019. In reading, 33% of third-graders met grade level, the same percentage who met that threshold in 2019. But 40% of third-graders didn’t meet or approach grade level in reading this year, compared to 36% in 2019. Read more at: https://www.star-telegram.com/news/local/education/article289259565.html#storylink=cpy view article arw

Four seniors at Central High School this past semester brought home top honors in welding, according to school officials. Mario De La Cruz, Dustin Posey, Josh Oates and Fernando Camacho won first place in the team build-off competition May 9-10 at the Texas State Technical College campus in Waco. “I am so proud of this team of young men for all of their accomplishments,” said CHS welding teacher Heather Hill. “As we only had one returning team member from last year’s team, this team learned to work together both efficiently and effectively very quickly.” view article arw

Houston ISD Superintendent Mike Miles said 2024 STAAR results show students achieved one of the best academic growth years that the district has ever experienced. On Tuesday, Miles held a press conference giving an overview of how HISD students performed on the assessments this year and referred to the students as having done "great." view article arw

KPRC 2′s Candace Burns will sit down with Houston Independent School District (HISD) Superintendent Mike Miles on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the district’s latest STAAR exam results. The State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) exams measure student achievement and district performance. This year’s results are the first under the new state-appointed administration. view article arw

The percentages of HISD students meeting grade-level standards in reading increased in grades 4-8, as did the percentages in math for grades 5, 6 and 8, according to spring 2024 data released by the district and spring 2023 scores previously released by the Texas Education Agency. view article arw

The Austin school district is hoping to draw Mendez Middle School students back to the campus over the summer through a series of new programs about filmmaking, music, cooking and school tutoring, among other things. School district Trustee Ofelia Zapata, who represents Mendez's area, has dubbed the initiative the “Love Hub,” which will serve as a community space for students in Dove Springs — a South Austin neighborhood tucked in between Interstate 35 to the west and the winding Onion Creek to the east. Zapata hopes the hub will also introduce something she says has been lacking at the school: parent inclusion. “I should be able to go into any school and feel the same culture of welcoming,” Zapata told the American-Statesman. “That is how you're going to engage parents. They're going to feel good. They're going to want to be there.” For five years, Mendez Middle School, at 5106 Village Square Drive, has been operated by a charter company as part of a last push to bring the chronically failing school up to state academic standards. view article arw

Partial scores from the state’s standardized test released Friday show high school students are still struggling with algebra, once again raising concerns about young Texans’ readiness to enter high-paying careers in STEM-related fields. The State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness end-of-course tests evaluate high-schoolers in five subjects: Algebra I, Biology, English I, English II and U.S. History. The exams gauge whether students’ grasp of a subject is appropriate for their grade level and if they need additional help to catch up.  The percentage of students who took the test this spring and met grade level for Algebra I was 45%, the same as last year. Since the pandemic, students’ academic performance in the subject has remained mostly unchanged. The latest results are still 17 percentage points below students' scores in spring 2019. view article arw

It’s the last day of the school year for students in Houston ISD and Superintendent Mike Miles was nearly gushing as he talked about how the district’s high school students performed on the state-mandated STAAR tests this year. “So this is a great year for the district and especially our kids,” Miles said. “The headline for me is the students and teachers did great. Really good job, it’s one of the highest years of academic growth the district has ever experienced.” Miles said results for grades 3 through 8 are even stronger and those come out next week. “And in reading and math, that’s probably the highest growth of any urban district in the history of Texas.” view article arw

The Houston Independent School District's state-appointed superintendent said the state takeover of the district could end sooner than expected based on this year's STAAR test results. Superintendent Mike Miles made that revelation during a Wednesday afternoon press conference, responding to a question from Eyewitness News. view article arw

According to preliminary standardized test results, Houston ISD high schoolers proficiently grew over the first year of the state’s takeover of Texas’s largest school district. State-appointed Superintendent Mike Miles touted improved STAAR test results during a press conference on Wednesday, the last day of the school year. He said early data shows that students in New Education System schools surpassed the scores received by non-NES students, but students across the district showed overall improvement. view article arw

Education officials in Texas are looking to standardize what students are taught. The Texas Education Agency has released thousands of pages of recommended curricula for public schools across the state. On the TEA's website, you can give feedback on whether you think this curriculum is fair and factual from Monday, June 3, until Friday, Aug. 16. This is a brand new curriculum that comes from a law passed last year. But the idea is familiar. Decades ago, schools in Texas operated based on state guidelines, and then the control moved to local districts. Now, it looks like there's a power shift back to the state having control. view article arw

The first year of the Texas Education Agency's takeover of Houston ISD has been mired in protests, walkouts and outcry due to staff turnover, controversial systemic reforms and more. The Chronicle published a survey on May 16 asking Houston ISD parents, teachers and community members about their thoughts on the state takeover as the district wraps up its first year under TEA control. In one question, the Chronicle asked if the respondents' view of the district has improved, stayed the same or worsened in the last year. As of May 31, over 550 people have responded to the callout; 13 respondents said their view stayed the same, 11 said their view has improved and 528 respondents said their view of HISD has worsened. Here's a look at responses to the survey. view article arw

Houston NAACP leaders have “deep concerns about the catastrophic conditions of HISD and the valid distrust of Mile Miles as the T.E.A. appointed superintendent of the district.” Thursday community leaders shared the podium with Houston NAACP President James Dixon who said they’d all come together under the theme that the Texas Education Agency plan is failing the city’s children. view article arw

Speaking from the steps of the Houston chapter of the NAACP in the Third Ward Thursday morning, a gauntlet of people demanded an end to the occupation of the Houston Independent School District by the Texas Education Agency and its appointed Superintendent F. Mike Miles. Speakers included NAACP Chapter President James Dixon, Congressman Al Green, newly elected State Senator Molly Cook, Houston Federation of Teachers President Jacqueline Anderson and Johnny Mata of the Greater Houston Coalition for Justice. All railed against the takeover of HISD by the state and the non-elected installation of Mike Miles. view article arw

A former Klein ISD student is accused of orchestrating a cyberattack that halted STAAR testing in April and he now faces a felony charge after thousands of students were impacted by internet problems. An April 16 internet disruption due to a “distributed denial of service attack” or DDoS, was traced to Klein Forest High School student Keontra Lamont Kenemore, 18, by the district’s IT department, according to Harris County court records and school officials. view article arw

'Were on the right side of history,' say parents, following a student walkout and teacher 'sickout' to increase opposition.  Hundreds of Houston community members assembled Saturday at City Hall to protest the Texas Education Agency's ongoing takeover of Houston ISD, the state-appointed Board of Managers, and Superintendent Mike Miles' management, coming at the end of a controversial first year since their appointment.  view article arw

Duncanville Reads, a literacy program founded by retired neurosurgeon Dr. Michael E. Miner in 2019, has expanded its outreach to now visit every campus in Duncanville ISD. Dr. Miner, an active advocate for advancing literacy, began volunteering to read to students at a local elementary school after retirement. Soon he was inspired to start the literacy program, to bring children’s book authors to read their works to the students. He describes the origins of the Duncanville Reads program in the accompanying essay. view article arw

Fourteen teachers gathered in the Cullen Place Elementary School library Thursday morning, invited to receive a gift and recognition for their efforts at improving student growth. The teachers earned a designation through the Texas’s Teacher Incentive Allotment program, which allows school districts to create a system for the highest performing teachers to receive pay boosts based on student growth. view article arw

Dennis Weiner, the former police chief for the Round Rock Independent School District, confirmed on Monday that the district placed him on administrative leave until the end of his contract. According to Weiner, the decision was made last week. It came months after a third-party investigator concluded in a report his former department was “toxic” and “hostile.” KXAN also obtained records showing the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement investigated RRISD’s police leadership in 2023 and found evidence of lapses in licensing. view article arw

Southlake parents urged Carroll ISD board members to begin negotiations with the Dept. of Education following a years-long investigation that found the district violated students’ civil rights. Parents urged action from the board during Tuesday night’s board meeting. It was the school board’s first public meeting since the Dept. of Education’s Office for Civil Rights upheld four student discrimination complaints last week. view article arw

The two conservators appointed by the Texas Education Agency to oversee the Socorro school district spoke to the media for the first time to explain their role. The Socorro Independent School District accepted a conservatorship back in March due to multiple issues facing the district, including a $33 million deficit. view article arw

Spectrum News’ Brett Shipp reported that Colorado-based Third Future Schools, which Miles founded and led until he was appointed to lead Houston ISD last summer, sent millions in taxpayer money from its school in Odessa to another network school in Colorado that needed financial assistance. The Texas Education Agency says it is reviewing the matter. view article arw

The Argyle ISD board of trustees approved hiring additional special education staff at an April 15 board meeting. Academic consulting firm Moak Casey presented its review of AISD's special education program to the board at an April 2 workshop, which prompted the district to consider program revisions. Special education enrollment has increased by almost 215% since 2013, according to district documents. view article arw

Houston ISD’s state-appointed Superintendent Mike Miles said Friday afternoon that the school district is facing an estimated $450 million gap in funding that will largely be made up by staff reductions as federal pandemic relief money expires and student enrollment continues to decline. Miles has said previously that the majority of the cuts will come from HISD's central office, and that his aim is to keep them “as far away from the classroom as possible.” His remarks Friday, though, appear to give the first indication of how widespread those cuts may be.

Houston ISD is overhauling how high school students are enrolled in advanced courses next year, automatically placing students who achieve at grade level into more challenging classes as the default rather than requiring them to opt in, as they did in the past. By boosting enrollment in advanced courses, the district hopes to expose more students to college-level material and prepare them for higher education. Questions linger, however, about how HISD will implement the expansion, and while some community members are celebrating the decision as a move toward greater equity, others question whether it will have the intended effect. view article arw

La Porte ISD’s Business Office has received its tenth consecutive Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting from the Association of School Business Officials International. The award recognizes districts that have met the program’s high standards for financial reporting and transparency. La Porte ISD’s Certificate of Excellence is for its Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the fiscal year ended 2023. “For over half a century, ASBO International’s Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting has been the gold standard in promoting and recognizing excellence in financial reporting,” said ASBO International Executive Director Jim Rowan. “Communicating the financial and economic state of a district is so important when engaging with the school community and building their trust. Districts that receive the COE Award have demonstrated their ability to do that at the highest level.” By participating in the COE program, school districts demonstrate their commitment to financial transparency. Applicants submit their report for review by a team of financial professionals who provide feedback to improve future documents. If the report meets the requirements of the program, it may receive the Certificate of Excellence. A district’s participation in the COE program can facilitate bond rating and continuing bond disclosure processes. Stacey McDowell is La Porte ISD’s chief financial officer. -30- view article arw

The agency is revising a new A-F accountability formula, which would have resulted in more drastic accountability drops than expected. The Texas Education Agency will delay the release of A-F accountability scores for the state’s public schools until later this fall in order to tweak a new formula that would have sent many districts’ grades plunging, the agency announced Tuesday. “You do want to set reasonable goals,” said TEA Commissioner Mike Morath. “And if no campuses in the state can possibly achieve it given current levels of performance, that isn't a reasonable goal.” view article arw

While the end of the school year is about a month away for students on the traditional calendar, current ninth-graders might still be contemplating what they intend to enroll in or participate in in the tenth grade.  Rising 10th-graders considering college should consider dual credit (DC) courses. Aldine ISD and its partner Lone Star College expanded access to high school sophomores this school year via the Accelerated College Academy (ACA); students at all comprehensive high schools have access to it. That is a year earlier than previously offered. In its inaugural year, 51 sophomores are currently participating, with an average success rate of 92% in earning college credit. view article arw

WOODVILLE – At its regular monthly meeting on Monday evening, the Woodville ISD Board of Trustees and district superintendent Lisa Meysembourg took an opportunity to shine a spotlight on the participants and leadership behind the district’s alternative teacher certification program. The Academy to Certify Teachers (ACT) was started by Jason Hicks and approved by the WISD board last December. Hicks, who serves as the district’s director of staff support services, was lauded by Meysembourg as “the driving force behind the program.” She also recognized Ashley Weatherford, the district’s curriculum director, for her role in the program. Source: https://www.easttexasnews.com/tyler-county-news-breakout/6367-teacher-certification-program-highlighted Tyler County News - Breakout © East Texas News view article arw

In 2021, Aldine ISD began to pilot the prekindergarten for 3-year-olds (PreK3) program at three primary schools: Griggs, Keeble, and Stovall. That will change starting this fall. Due to feedback, families zoned to AISD’s other nine primary schools across the district demonstrated interest and need to have the opportunity to have their eligible students enroll in a PreK3 program at the early childhood/prekindergarten/kindergarten (EC/PreK/K; also called primary campuses) schools their child would attend as a 4-year-old prekindergarten (PreK4) student. Starting in the fall of 2024, all 12 primary schools will offer the PreK3 program. view article arw

Q: Is CSISD laying off employees? A: No. CSISD is reallocating staff within the curriculum and instruction department to best serve student growth and support teachers. All enrichment specialists, instructional coaches and interventionists will have the opportunity to be employed by CSISD in professional positions for the 2024-2025 school year. Q: Will CSISD have interventionists for the 2024-2025 school year?  A: Classroom teachers intervene with students on a daily basis. While CSISD will not have the position of interventionists as we have had in the past, students will continue to receive targeted, data-driven intervention by our highly-qualified and dedicated classroom teachers. Professional learning will be provided throughout the school year as we remain committed to teacher development and student growth. Change is often difficult and challenging, but CSISD is confident that this change will better support students and staff. For employees that currently fill an interventionist role, they have the opportunity to serve in a different capacity such as instructional coach, MTSS coordinator or classroom teacher. view article arw

Houston ISD student performance on the ACT and SAT dipped slightly during the 2022-2023 academic year, according to recent reports from the district. The district’s lower average scores on the ACT and SAT come amid a national and statewide decrease in performance on the national standardized tests among the Class of 2023. However, HISD students did see increased passage rates on Advanced Placement exams in 2023 compared to the previous year, similarly to other districts in Texas and the U.S. While student performance was mixed, participation in all three exams — which the state uses to determine college readiness and campus accountability ratings — increased. HISD did not respond to a request for comment on the three reports outlining ACT, SAT and AP exam student participation and performance. view article arw

More than 1,000 middle school students failing math or reading at Judson Independent School District will be able to advance to the next grade level under a new policy approved by the board this month. That still leaves hundreds expected to repeat a grade in Bexar County’s fourth largest school system. view article arw

A San Antonio-area school district was once again recognized as one of the best in the area. It isn't the first time the Texas Hill Country school district had schools ranked on the national list, but there has been some movement in the rankings. view article arw