DALLAS — On a recent Sunday night, Paul Quinn College president Michael Sorrell kicked off an hourlong, unstructured group discussion during his problem-solving course with a question.  “What’s on your mind?” he asked the class composed of the school’s top 18 students.  Sophomore LaMontria Edwards promptly asked a question about Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War,” the ancient and seminal Chinese text about war and strategy assigned to the class. She inadvertently launched a meandering discussion that touched on everything from ancient Greek historians to reparations for American slavery and inequality in the modern criminal justice system. view article arw

HARLINGEN, Texas (KGBT) — Eight Pharr-San Juan-Alamo Independent School District campuses won Imagine Learning Math Blockbuster Awards, according to a release.  PSJA ISD said a representative from Imagine Learning visited the eight campuses during the fall semester.  The release stated that the following are the schools who won for the fall semester: view article arw

There is a link to the complete "Niche" list in the article - js - Midway ISD was named the 17th best school district in Texas for 2020, according to Niche.com . College Station ISD was named the 20th best school district.  The 2020 Best School Districts ranking is based on rigorous analysis of key statistics and millions of reviews from students and parents using data from the U.S. Department of Education. view article arw

AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Higgins ISD will now be consolidated into Canadian ISD.  This is an update to a story we’ve been following for you.  The board made the decision based on feedback from the community.  The district says they’re doing this because they can’t maintain an average daily attendance of 90 students.  Currently, 26 students from Higgins go to school in Canadian ISD with more to follow next school year. view article arw

A public hearing was held at Keller ISD’s Dec. 16 meeting to discuss an optional flexible school day program in the 2020-21 school year. The program would allow eligible students more flexibility in their scheduling so they can meet their attendance requirements in order to graduate, according to KISD documents. No speaker participated in the public hearing, and the school board voted to apply for the program with the Texas Education Agency. view article arw

Possibly only a temporary setback, however. A federal judge on Wednesday denied Houston ISD’s request for a preliminary injunction and dismissed its lawsuit aimed at stopping the Texas Education Agency from replacing the district’s elected board, delivering a temporary victory to state officials. view article arw

A teacher in the Marlin school district told a state-appointed board of managers that the new administration is mistreating her colleagues and hindering their ability to teach. The Waco Tribune-Herald reported that elementary school teacher Cynthia Derry told the board at Wednesday’s meeting that unscheduled events, lack of discipline for unruly students, and poor administrative support “negatively impact my ability to teach children who have been deemed academically below their grade levels by at least two years.” view article arw

Marlin Independent School District teacher Cynthia Derry told the district’s state-appointed board of managers Wednesday night that she and other teachers are weary with the way the new administration is treating them. Derry read a letter aloud to the board during the public comment portion of the board’s meeting and held another four letters from other Marlin ISD teachers who signed their letters anonymously for fear of retaliation. She plans to submit the letters to the board of managers. view article arw

A Richardson ISD committee has been formed to study the possibility of moving sixth grade to junior high campuses. But district officials say they have a lot of homework to do prior to deciding what is in the best interest of students. Conversations around the process, known as grade configuration, come on the heels of the 2018 adoption of the district’s strategic action plan, according to a mid-November letter to parents from Superintendent Jeannie Stone.   view article arw

Austin ISD trustees Dec. 16 recognized the Bowie Outdoor Performing Ensemble for its fall marching band season. The band is led by Band Director Garth Gunderson.  “When I'm out there [watching the marching band] I'm just a dad, but every single time it brought a tear to my eyes because of the passion and the commitment you demonstrate,” Superintendent Paul Cruz said at the meeting. “It's just amazing to see when students demonstrate their genius in so many ways.” view article arw

The Pearland Board of Trustees voted to offer full-day pre-K sevices in the fall at the meeting on Dec. 17. House Bill 3 requires all pre-K services for eligible four-year-old students become full-day services beginning with the start of the upcoming school year, if districts are unable to begin offering the services during the 2019-20 school year. Before making this decision, the district was required to see if it would be possible to start full day pre-K as early as the 2019-20 spring semester by partnering with a vendor or private school, Superintendent John Kelly said. view article arw

Parents are still fighting the district's plan to close Brooke, Metz, Pease and Sims elementary schools by the next school year. view article arw

Twelve Texas school districts have been recognized for their outstanding programs with the release of Texas School Business magazine’s 13th Annual Bragging Rights 2019-2020 special issue. Bragging Rights, which calls for nominations is published every December. It recognizes school districts that have implemented programs that are bettering the lives of Texas’ students, schools and communities.  view article arw

After months of meetings, planning and hearings, the Flour Bluff ISD Board of Trustees has approved the District of Innovation Plan. The public was invited, multiple times, to weigh in on the plan. For FBISD, the student to teacher ratio will be affected in addition to when school starts in August.  view article arw

The Crosby ISD Board of Trustees approved the new Memorandum of Understanding between Crosby Independent School District and San Jacinto Community College District, allowing Crosby ISD students to take dual-credit classes, at its meeting on Dec. 16. Crosby ISD Executive Director of Secondary Education Todd Hicks explained that there are two options for students who want to enroll in dual-credit courses. They can take core academic offerings through the Modified Early College Academy program starting at the beginning of their junior year and the credits will work towards an Associate’s Degree upon gradating from high school, or they can take technical classes for a certification. view article arw

Students from Crockett Intermediate School and Paris Junior High School combined to compete and they captured second place in the 15AAAA Academic UIL Invitational Meet. Paris students garnered 1040 points, just 187 points behind Pleasant Grove who placed first.  Winners by event and grade level include: view article arw

The Katy Independent School district is nearly 80% built-out, but there are still tens of thousands of students who will be going to Katy schools over the next decade according to a demographer's presentation on Monday night. Population and Survey Analysts presented its annual demographic update on Katy ISD enrollment growth at the December school board meeting. According to the organization, Katy ISD is expected to have nearly 100,000 students by 2029, making it the second fastest growing school district in Texas. view article arw

Next school year, Tomball ISD will offer specialized energy and business programs through the district’s new academy, housed at the corporate headquarters of a leading oil and gas company service provider. The school board, during its Dec. 10 meeting, voted unanimously to approve the Tomball ISD Academy of Energy and International Business which is scheduled to open August 2020 at BJ Services. The company is based in Tomball at their facility on FM 2920 near Hufsmith-Kohrville Road. view article arw

Snow!!!

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I woke up this morning and looked out the hotel window and saw a parking lot blanketed in white. It was beautiful and I drove to work listening to Christmas carols, grinning like an idiot. I arrived at the school, amazed with my ability to actually drive in the snow, hopped out of the car... view article arw

Superintendent Nate Carman has argued against a judge’s plan to appoint a replacement for school board President Michael Vargas, who was ordered suspended from office in what’s being called a precedent-setting case. In an affidavit, Carman states San Benito residents should appoint the replacement — not state District Judge Manuel Bañales, who ordered Vargas be suspended Friday on the grounds of intoxication about six months after his arrest for driving while intoxicated. view article arw

At a press conference on Monday, the Save Austin Schools coalition and others called on Austin ISD trustees to reconsider their vote to close four elementary schools. On Nov. 18, the Austin ISD school board voted to approve the school closure plan. The schools included Sims, Pease, Metz and Brooke elementary schools. view article arw

Haley Dave watched her plans for high school change inside the board chambers of the Fort Bend Independent School District Monday night.  The 13-year-old eighth grader had already applied to two academies — or school choice — programs in the southwest Houston area district. But after the district’s trustees voted unanimously to dramatically change how the district submits testing data for and ranks students who chose to attend schools outside their regular attendance zone, Dave said she does not know what she will do.  “It might be better just to go to my zoned school, or maybe not go to FBISD at all,” Dave said. “I think this could really affect my future, so I don’t like it.” view article arw

Austin ISD trustees met Dec. 9 in a public session for the first time since approving the district’s School Changes plan in November, a plan that will close four campuses—Brooke, Mets, Pease and Sims elementary schools—beginning in the 2020-21 school year and reinvest costs into other district programs. At the meeting, trustees discussed ongoing transition planning regarding affected campuses with district staff. However, prior to the meeting, AISD released an equity report by Chief Equity Officer Stephanie Hawley that analyzes the school changes process overall. view article arw

Dallas ISD Superintendent Michael Hinojosa shared with host Jason Whitely how he's going to accomplish three big goals to help students in the district. view article arw

In his quest to ensure his four-year-old daughter grows up bilingual, Grant Stanis moved his family into the Eanes school district for its popular Spanish immersion program. "When we looked for homes, we specifically look for homes in districts that had this program," Stanis said. "My ask of you is to always think of the children and you’ll know exactly what to do." view article arw

Top LYS Tweets – December 16, 2019

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If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS tweets from the past week when they were first posted.  And if you are on Twitter, you might want to check out the Tweeters who made this week’s list.   Ms. Shipper taught math to goofy middle school kids and... view article arw

The Plainview Independent School District will consider a partnership for full-day pre-kindergarten classes during its next meeting at 6 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 19 inside the PISD Board Room at 2417 Yonkers St. Guidelines have been set through House Bill 3, that was passes earlier this year, for eligible entities. Those include being a Texas Rising Star Program Provider with a three-star certification, are nationally accredited, are a head start provider, are a Texas School Ready! participant, and meets requirements under HB3′s Section 29.1532. view article arw

Due to recent impacts of House Bill 3, Amarillo Independent School District is reaching out to start the process of viewing proposals for partnerships with childcare providers in regards to serving children in prekindergarten. Partnerships can benefit all stakeholders by creating more convenience for families, and potentially increasing enrollment for providers. For more information, you are formally invited to attend a public meeting Thursday, December 12, 2019, at 6:30 p.m. in the AISD Rod Schroder Education Support Center Board Room. view article arw

The Austin Independent School District has announced a list of schools frozen to transfers in the 2020-21 school year. AISD says each year, they determine which schools should be frozen by noting which campuses have, or are expected to have, enrollments exceeding their capacities. For 2020-21, the following schools are frozen: view article arw

The rocket that was launched last month at Austin ISD when its board of trustees voted to close four elementary schools found its target this week, with the public release of the "Austin ISD 2019 School Closures Proposal: Equity Analysis of Process, Principles & Practices." The report by AISD Equity Officer Dr. Stephanie Hawley was controversially not made available to the board in advance of its Nov. 18 vote to shutter the Brooke, Metz, Sims, and Pease campuses (district staff said at the time that it remained incomplete); Hawley herself addressed the board that day, calling the School Changes proposal "a map of what 21st century racism looks like." Three of the four campuses to be closed are in East Austin; most of the students attending the four schools are economically disadvantaged. view article arw

Garland ISD leaders recently launched the state’s first affiliate of the Texas Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (TALAS) – the Garland Association of Latino Administrators (GALA). GALA’s vision is to develop all leaders who serve the Latino community in order to foster success for all students. Members have access to an exclusive networking group, professional growth opportunities, mentorship programs and more. Membership is open to all Garland ISD staff and community members. view article arw

Excerpts: It’s A Different Game Now

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When I train teachers, I make it very clear that I am teaching them to do things that I never did in the classroom. Sometimes, this will lead to someone asking me, “Then why should we listen to you?   A valid question with a good answer. First, I was a decent teacher in my... view article arw

The path forward for Dallas’ children is education, and we owe it to them to offer the best educational options in the best facilities that we can provide. That means giving parents choices beyond the neighborhood school, something Dallas ISD has committed to and is in the process of expanding now. view article arw

The Clarendon College Board of Regents this week rescinded a November 21 vote to end the contract of Dr. Robert Riza as president and voted to put him on administrative leave instead. During a called meeting Monday, December 9, the board without discussion approved a motion reversing their action on November 21, which would have ended the president’s contract by December 31. That was followed by a new motion from Regent Carey Wann to place Riza on administrative leave effective immediately “due to some things that have been brought to light recently.” That motion was also approved with no discussion. view article arw

The state’s standardized tests, a regular and collective cause of consternation for students, administrators, teachers and parents alike, received something of a passing grade from university researchers last week. view article arw