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TYLER, Texas — During a special called board meeting on Thursday, the Tyler Independent School District's Board of Trustees made history and voted to change the names of the district's high schools.  Following the board's executive session and after more than 40 people participated in the public comment portion of the meeting, the board voted unanimously to rename Robert E. Lee High School and John Tyler High School due to the names having ties to slavery and the Confederacy. A majority of the speakers were in favor of changing the names. view article arw

TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Robert E. Lee and John Tyler are two high schools whose names are in the center of a national discussion.The debate has continued for several years, and has recently been brought up after the death of George Floyd in police custody. Many say the name reminds them of a segregated while others say changing the name won’t change history.  For those who want to keep the name, they say the change isn’t worth the cost. view article arw

DONNA - Despite the retiring of the name and logo of the Washington NFL franchise on Monday, Donna ISD, whose high school shares that mascot name and logo, will not be making a similar change.  The district released a statement on Monday saying while they are aware of such changes in Washington and elsewhere both this week and in recent years, they feel their communication with local native american groups places them in a different situation in regards to the name.  "For nearly 100 years, the Donna ISD community has taken pride in our Donna   Redskin tradition which we hold with tremendous honor," the district said in a statement.   (16) view article arw

Dripping Springs ISD has finalized its acquisition of 64 acres from the Headwaters at Barton Creek residential development for a future school site located off Hwy. 290. According to a July 13 press release from Freehold Communities, the developer of Headwaters, the school site is at the western edge of the Headwaters development. view article arw

TYLER, Texas (KETK) – After years of back-and-forth debate within the Tyler community, the TISD board will vote Thursday night on whether to change the names of both Robert E. Lee and John Tyler High Schools.  While it has been a recurring topic over the last several years, this latest push came in the wake of the death of George Floyd while in police custody back in May.

Grand Prairie ISD is changing the name of Robert E. Lee Elementary School.  The school, located east of Highway 161 and midway between Interstates 20 and 30, will now be known as Delmas Morton Elementary.  The new name honors longtime Grand Prairie educator Delmas Morton, who taught at Dalworth (now Daniels) Elementary and Adams Middle School and was principal at Austin Elementary. The decision was made after the board discussed a list of options at its Monday meeting. view article arw

SAN BENITO — As the status of the coronavirus pandemic continues to remain fluid, an in-person return to school remains up in the air for the upcoming school year of this school district.  During a school board meeting held Tuesday, plans for the upcoming school year and the school district’s $40 million bond project were discussed. view article arw

Rice University plans to take some fall courses outdoors amid the COVID-19 pandemic and will build nine structures on campus to help maintain social distancing guidelines. “Being in Houston, we can be outdoors the entire academic year,” Kevin Kirby, Rice’s vice president for administration and chair of its Crisis Management Advisory Committee, said Tuesday. “As we’ve all learned about coronavirus, the risks decrease when you’re outside.”  So, as the college maps out the maximum number of people for every space on campus, it plans to construct nine outdoor spaces to use for in-person instruction, lectures and activities. view article arw

DEL VALLE, Texas (KXAN) — On Thursday, the Del Valle Independent School District approved an incentive agreement with Tesla, which would allow the car maker to build a 4-5 million square-foot electric vehicle manufacturing facility on district land. view article arw

TYLER, Texas — The Robert E. Lee High School name change will be on the agenda for the next Tyler Independent School board meeting, according to the district.  Yet, former students part of the Time Is Now movement say even after asking to be included in the conversation with community leaders, they’re still being left out of the conversations. view article arw

Two projects from Tomball ISD's 2017 bond referendum are slated to wrap up in August, with additional facilities complete by summer 2021, according to a July 1 release from Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam Inc., the firm serving as program manager for TISD's bond referendum.   Voters approved the $275 million bond referendum in November 2017 to accommodate projected enrollment growth totaling 19,500 students enrolled by 2021, according to the release.   view article arw

Twelve portables used to teach students at McAllen Independent School District could soon be used to help hospitals amid the pandemic. School board members approved to lease the district's portables to area hospitals during a special meeting Wednesday.  Hospitals across the Rio Grande Valley are running out of space as COVID-19 cases continue surging. DHR Health, McAllen Medical Center and the HCA Rio Grande Regional Hospital showed interest in using the district's unused portables as a solution to their crowding problem. view article arw

McALLEN — The school board here approved the lease of a dozen surplus portable buildings to local hospitals for overflow COVID-19 patient capacity Wednesday afternoon.  The district approved leases of the buildings to McAllen Medical Center, HCA Rio Grande Regional Hospital and Doctors Hospital at Renaissance. Rio Grande Valley hospitals have said for over a week that the influx of new COVID-19 patients has pushed them to capacity.   view article arw

Two projects from Tomball ISD's 2017 bond referendum are slated to wrap up in August, with additional facilities complete by summer 2021, according to a July 1 release from Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam Inc., the firm serving as program manager for TISD's bond referendum. Voters approved the $275 million bond referendum in November 2017 to accommodate projected enrollment growth totaling 19,500 students enrolled by 2021, according to the release. Grand Oaks Elementary School—the district's newest elementary, located at Cypress-Rosehill Road and Grand Parkway—is scheduled to open in August as part of the Elmer and Dorothy Beckendorf Educational Complex. Grand Oaks will accommodate 900 students in grades K-4 within its 112,000-square-foot space, according to the release. view article arw

KYLE, Texas - Hays CISD administration says it will be recommending that the Board of Trustees vote to change the Hays High School Rebel mascot after receiving student, teacher, and community feedback. According to school board policy, the Board must vote to change the mascot. view article arw

Tyler ISD Superintendent Marty Crawford believes there will be a vote whether to change the name of Robert E. Lee High School. At a meeting Tuesday night at St. James CME Church in Tyler, Crawford and community leaders talked about the process. He also said there was other support. view article arw

Some students say former President Woodrow Wilson shouldn’t be honored with his name on their Dallas high school because of racist ideals he seemed to support.  A petition to change the name now has more than 1,300 signatures. It urges the Dallas school board to act, saying Wilson’s policies deliberately and intentionally destroyed Black middle-class communities.  “Because of the Black Lives Matter movement, it really made me think about why Woodrow Wilson — despite his racist thinking — is on our school, which is a mostly minority majority school,” said Cameron McElhenie, a senior at the high school who describes himself as half Hispanic and half white. view article arw

Cleveland ISD’s board of trustees on Tuesday night, June 30, awarded a $24.376 million contract to McKinney, Texas-based Pogue Construction for a new elementary campus in the Colony Ridge development south of Plum Grove. The yet-unnamed campus is being referred to as Elementary Campus #5 until the school board determines its name. view article arw

TYLER, Texas (KETK) – The debate to change the name of Robert E. Lee High School has intensified.   David Jones is a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army and a 1982 graduate of Robert E. Lee High School.  When it comes to changing the name, Jones wants to know how Tyler ISD will pay for it and if it’s worth it for taxpayers.  “Where’s the money going to come from and is it really, truly a priority?” he asked. “Band, football, the football field everything associated with sports would be an immense cost. I don’t think that the taxpayers are going to want to pay for that.” view article arw

Fitch Ratings has assigned a 'AAA' rating based on the Texas Permanent School Fund (PSF) guaranty and a 'A+' underlying rating to the following White Settlement Independent School District (ISD), TX unlimited tax (ULT) bonds: view article arw

Fitch Ratings - Austin - 26 Jun 2020: Fitch Ratings has assigned a 'AAA' rating based on the Texas Permanent School Fund (PSF) guaranty and a 'AA' underlying rating to the following San Antonio Independent School District, TX's (the district) bonds: view article arw

TYLER — Robert E. Lee High School students and alumni again are demanding Tyler ISD change the name of the school, but they are concerned their voices won’t be heard with only one regular meeting and a workshop scheduled before the new $123 million facility opens Aug. 18.  More than 40 people signed up to speak at this week’s board meeting. Only three guest speakers were in favor of keeping the name. The board, while aware that protesters planned to attend the meeting and speak on the issue, did not put a discussion item on the agenda. view article arw

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – El Paso Independent School District wants you to help name Lee Elementary School.  Last week, trustees decided to rename the Northeast El Paso campus after increased calls from the public. Robert E. Lee was the General of the Confederacy during the Civil War.  “The Board’s decision to move away from the Robert E. Lee name provides EPISD with an opportunity to give the school a name that honors and celebrates the community it serves,” said. view article arw

Northside ISD’s newest middle school will soon bear the name of former Texas House Speaker Joe Straus. The district’s board of trustees voted this week to name its new middle school Straus Middle School. Straus is the longest-serving Republican Speaker in Texas history, serving as the presiding officer of the lower chamber from 2009-19. view article arw

Dripping Springs ISD held a socially distanced, mask-wearing groundbreaking for Elementary #5 on Darden Hill Road. Left to right:  County Commissioner Walt Smith, State Representative Erin Zwiener, Board member Ron Jones, Board Vice President Dr. Mary Jane Hetrick, Board member Barbara Stroud, Board President Carrie Kroll, Superintendent Todd Washburn, Board member Joanna Day. (DSISD Board members Marisa Grijalva and Shannon O’Connor are not pictured.) view article arw

Eanes finalized a contract for an aquatics center, answering a decade-long push for a district swimming pool, officials said Tuesday.  The contract means that WAQUA, LLC, the company hired to manage the facility, wil cover all operational costs associated with the aquatics center while maintaining expectations established by the district. The group also operates the Westlake Athletic Community Center , and currently provides access for Westlake High School student groups including badminton, band, baseball, basketball, cheer, color guard, football, soccer, softball, Teen Teaching and track. view article arw

TYLER — Hundreds of protesters made clear to the Tyler ISD board of trustees that the fight to change the name of Robert E. Lee High School has not gone away.  For more than an hour before the board meeting began Monday night, hundreds of people chanted in the parking lot of the Jim Plyler Instructional Complex, demanding a change to the name of the school. The renewed push comes after weeks of nightly protests in Tyler in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.  Dozens of Tyler residents and alumni spoke to the board, limited to 80 seconds.   The Tyler Morning Telegraph, sister paper of the News-Journal, was not allowed in the public meeting at the public complex.  Jennifer Hines, the district’s executive director of communications, told Sandra Stanley, coordinator of communications, through text outside in the parking lot that no media was allowed in because of capacity reasons.  When asked if the media could go in once audience members began leaving the meeting and the room was under capacity, Hines responded by text, “No.”  The meeting was streamed on the Tyler ISD website and on Suddenlink cable; however, the audio cut out on nearly every speaker. view article arw

The president of Tyler Independent School District's Board of Trustees issued a statement acknowledging a renewed push to change the name of Robert E. Lee High School.  Community members are expected to protest ahead of the June board meeting at the district's Plyler Instructional Complex, and speak during the public comment portion of the meeting.  Board president Wade Washmon said in the statement that he hopes the summer can be used to productively discuss the issue.  "We as a board are well aware of the issues surrounding the names of both of our flagship high schools. We have heard from, and anticipate hearing more, from the community on the subject. This time in between school years will hopefully be used to discuss, and find both consensus and meaningful resolution in a unified manner," Washmon said. "Our thoughts on this matter will be limited to future board meetings where this topic is on the agenda, and of course during our conversations with community members. It is our obligation to remain poised and reasonable during this time, and we would appreciate your patience as we work, serve, and handle the business of this district while also addressing this issue. All media inquiries should be directed through the Tyler ISD communications department." view article arw

Midland ISD has plans to spend at least $1.307 million on the renovation of employee housing for 2020-21.  The item was on a list of expenditures of $100,000 or more approved by district leaders at their meeting on Monday.  The school board approved in June 2019 the purchase of two apartment complexes to be used for teacher and staff housing.  The district negotiated with the owners of Simpatico Apartments, located at 2910 W. Michigan Ave., and Town and Country Apartments, located at 3310 Bedford Ave., to purchase their existing 25-unit complexes for a combined $3.2 million. view article arw

Protesters demand name change of Robert E. Lee High School at Tyler ISD board meeting  Demand to change Robert E. Lee High School name resurfaces as protesters gather outside board meeting  Protesters gather to demand change in Robert E. Lee High School name  TYLER, Texas (KETK) – The debate to change the name of Robert E. Lee High School in Tyler has resurfaced once again since 2018.  Over 75 protestors supporting the change showed up outside Monday night’s board meeting with one goal – to put the topic back on the board’s agenda.  Back in 2018, after several months of debate, the motion to change the school’s name was ultimately tabled with no action taken. view article arw

Lake Travis ISD has moved another step closer to completing the Vail Divide Southern Extension project. Construction is complete on Phase 4 of the project, which is now awaiting approval from Travis County.  LTISD and Travis County entered into an interlocal agreement Jan. 15 for the project, which includes the construction of a roadway and bridge between Hamilton Pool Road and Hwy. 71 to relieve traffic congestion. Once completed, the roadway will provide additional access to LTISD’s Bee Cave Middle School.  As part of the project, LTISD straightened Vail Divide to enter the middle school’s campus and realigned the roadway within the Bella Colinas neighborhood to create a new intersection now called Los Flores. view article arw

DEL VALLE, Texas (KXAN) — Tuesday, Travis County Commissioners will begin discussions and hear public comment on the proposed 4-5 million square-foot Tesla manufacturing plant in Del Valle. If approved, the factory would create 5,000 jobs.  Commissioners do not plan to vote on the proposal Tuesday, and will focus on public comment.  The proposed site of Tesla’s “Gigafactory” is located in southeast Travis County on a 2,100-acre plot of land at the intersection of State Highway 130 and Harold Green Road in Del Valle.  view article arw

Dripping Springs ISD officials held a groundbreaking for its fifth elementary school campus June 22. The school, to be located at the intersection of Sawyer Ranch Road and Darden Hill Road, is slated to open in fall 2021.  As preliminary site work begins on the 155-acre property, the county also continues to collaborate with DSISD to improve traffic flow and safety at the intersection, including the insertion of a roundabout that will align with the campus's entrance, according to a May update from the district. view article arw

Crawford Road in Argyle might soon see some heavy construction if negotiations go smoothly between four local government entities.  The road is a significant artery for the town, but sections are managed independently by Argyle, Denton County and city of Denton governments. view article arw

The Mission school district purchased a vacant furniture store, with plans to serve the community by bringing the building back to life.  “Everything seemed to fall into place to be able to address a number of district needs in this strategic purchase,” Mission CISD Superintendent Carol G. Perez said in a news release Saturday. “The district has been facing a number of operational facility-related needs for a while. Through the purchase of this building we can address quite a few of those needs.” view article arw