Southside Independent School District parents and community members organized through COPS/Metro Alliance told the district’s board of managers on Thursday night that parents without Texas driver’s licenses were being turned away from campuses. Dozens of students and parents gathered at the Thursday night meeting, standing behind COPS/Metro leaders who delivered an emotional, and at times tearful, plea to meet with Superintendent Mark Eads and district leaders to sort the issue out. view article arw

Thirteen Texas universities and colleges landed on the Princeton Review’s Best Colleges 2020 list.  The list, released in August, doesn’t rank universities but instead gives them a distinction of being considered the best according to more than 140,000 surveyed students.  The University of Houston and Rice University made the list, as well as University of Texas at Austin and Texas State University in San Marcos. view article arw

An image that appears to show Smithson Valley High School football players with profane and racist comments is fake, Comal ISD officials said. Steve Stanford, executive director of communications at Comal ISD, said the image "looks like it was doctored by someone else." "We're just very concerned that someone may have taken and doctored an image that was posted in good faith," he said. "It is very concerning." view article arw

A local school district is teaching the value of being frugal. La Feria ISD is partnering with Lone Star Bank to offer Cowboy Savings Banks to their kinder and first graders. view article arw

Beaumont middle school students had another opportunity to learn about the importance of pursuing higher education and making good choices. view article arw

Two weeks ago, Travis High School coaches and players shared with the American-Statesman how poverty permeates almost every aspect of their football program, from aging equipment to the modest meals players eat before games. The Statesman found a correlation between student poverty and wins and losses among Central Texas high schools: The poorer the student body, the fewer games the football team won. Last Monday, the day after the story published, a West Lake Hills resident anonymously dropped off a $5,000 check at the South Austin school, where 79% of students are low-income, and gave specific instructions that the money only be used for football equipment. view article arw

Inside one of the oldest venues in Burleson ISD, a transformation is happening. A stage is set, smoke machines and multicolored lights are added, and more screens – from personal-sized computer monitors to big-screen televisions – are needed for an event that this gymnasium has never seen before. This happened back in February, when the district hosted its inaugural esports tournament. It was a huge success, according to Leslie Bender Jutzi, the district’s chief academic officer. And if you would’ve told her in seven months that the district would be hosting a similar event inside the largest esports arena in North America, she wouldn’t have believed you. view article arw

The North Lamar High School Marching Band, under the direction of Randy Jones, Jason R. Smith, Cristian Gomez and Marcus Lutz, with assistance from Gina Ervin and Chris Garza, traveled to Mineola on Monday, October 14 to compete in the Mineola Marching Festival. Over 30 bands in class 2A -5A showed up to compete in the festival. view article arw

An East Texas teacher was highlighted on her school’s Facebook page Thursday for a loving method she uses to greet her students. Cheryl Burnaman, a kindergarten teacher at Martinsville ISD in Nacogdoches, was filmed greeting her students to start the day. view article arw

As the Berry Miller Junior High School eighth grade football team took the field Wednesday night, its cheerleading squad was right there with them, along with one teammate who has been a game-changer. "I wasn't sure how it was going to go. I just knew that I liked Claire," said Natalie Pizzo, her cheerleading coach. Pizzo is also 14-year-old Claire Moreno's Life Skills Teacher at the Pearland ISD school. view article arw

Tomball ISD staff and parents met at a District Zone Committee meeting Thursday morning, Oct. 17, to look at the zoning boundaries for their new elementary and middle schools, with input and some criticism from parents. District Zone Committee members were given multiple maps showing options for zoning for the new schools, which have yet to be named, and were given the opportunity to rank their preferred choices. Tomball ISD plans to have their new elementary school open in 2020, and their new junior high school open in 2021. view article arw

Every day a group of students at Belton High School get together to not only play games, but to lift each other up. Students volunteer their time to meet with special needs kids at the gym for Partners P.E. It's a program that has been around for about 12 years, according to P.E. teacher Lauren Marx.  view article arw

The long-awaited recording of the meeting between House Speaker Dennis Bonnen and Empower Texans CEO Michael Quinn Sullivan earlier this summer has finally been released.  The content of the hourlong recording verifies Sullivan’s account of their meeting: that Bonnen offered Sullivan’s organization media passes to the House floor, and that he and then-House Republican Caucus Chairman Dustin Burrows offered up 10 Republicans Sullivan’s group could oppose in upcoming March primaries. Two of those GOP legislators on that hit list were Trent Ashby, of Lufkin, and Travis Clardy, of Nacogdoches. view article arw

A conspiracy theorist who claimed that the Sandy Hook massacre did not happen, has been ordered to pay $450,000 (£351,000) to the father of one of the victims. Leonard Pozner, whose six-year-old son Noah was one of 26 killed in the massacre, was awarded the money by a jury in Wisconsin after successfully suing James Fetzer for defamation.  view article arw

At Tuesday's Montgomery ISD board meeting, parents addressed the off-campus hazing incident that is now currently under investigation by the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office. According to the latest press release, detectives have confiscated four student cell phones, which are currently undergoing forensic examination. view article arw

McLeod is mourning the death of a teacher and two family members who were killed in a car accident last Saturday. On Saturday afternoon, first-grade teacher Jessica Baig, along with her husband and a daughter who was a 5th grader at the school, were killed when a Dodge Ram truck hit them head-on. Superintendent Cathy May says Mrs. Baig had an effect on everyone she knew. view article arw

First, with a later starting time, students who have working parents may be left alone in the morning and have to get themselves ready for school without adult supervision. They may not have adequate guidance to make sure they get to school. Second, many students have after-school jobs or are involved in extracurricular programs that will be affected by this mandate.  Finally, with students getting out of school later, they may be walking home in the dark. These are just a few items that need to be studied before this law takes effect. view article arw

According to Bertie Simmons, the legendary principal who was sent home from Furr High School in October 2017 by Houston ISD officials, when it came time to work out the last details of her settlement with HISD she was asked to sign a statement promising that she wouldn’t say anything bad about the district. No, she said, she wouldn’t do that. If you don’t, she says they warned her, we won’t issue a statement to the public thanking you for your years of service. That was OK with her, she says. Because she had a few things she wanted to say. view article arw

For those Mineral Wells High School students who will enter the workforce after graduation, Career and Technology Education instructor Bobby Mori asks them if they want to push buttons or push brooms? Essentially he is asking whether they can push themselves into new challenges and direction. Mori teaches MWHS’ new Transportation, Distribution and Logistics program that is part of the school’s broad CTE offerings in the fields of agriculture, business, family and consumer sciences, health science technology, and trade and industrial. view article arw

Amid a growing district, the Sherman Independent School District is contemplating staggering the start of the school day for its campuse. The district discussed potentially setting up two tiers for start times Tuesday night as a part of its planning for the 2020 school year. The upcoming school year will represent a year of major changes across the district triggered by the opening of the new Sherman High School. The existing high school will be converted into the district’s second middle school and move away from the intermediate school model. These changes will also allow Dillingham Intermediate to be converted into an elementary school and change the coverage area for the district’s campuses. view article arw

Imagine that you’re running a public educational system. Parents with school-age children are moving into your community in a steady, almost breakneck pace. Where do you put those children? How do you accommodate your school system’s new neighbors? This is a “headache” I suspect most public-school educators and administrators would love to face every day. Welcome to the world of Princeton Independent School District administrators, who are trying to manage a school system that is growing each day. view article arw

Montgomery ISD has concluded its investigation of the alleged hazing incident involving Montgomery High School football students. All necessary disciplinary actions have been taken, but details will not be released, according to the district. The MISD board of trustees delivered a prepared statement at a regular board meeting Oct. 15. view article arw

Abilene Independent School District officials like names. Thus, they've attached one to the future career and technical education high school they're building on Loop 322. It'll be known as The LIFT Center. A name, district officials say, us inspired by terminology and themes associated with early conversations about the building's creation. view article arw

The cost of college continues to increase, but too often, financial aid officials say, students fail to tap into existing resources, resulting in “money left on the table.” A new state law could help. Included in House Bill 3, which focused on school finance reform, is a requirement that all Texas high school students fill out and submit a free application for federal student aid, or FAFSA, prior to graduating. Current high school sophomores who graduate in 2022 will be the first class to fall under the new law. “People feel that if you complete the FAFSA, you’d be more inclined to want to go to college [and]to learn more about financial aid,” said Jerel Booker, assistant commissioner for college readiness and success with the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. “A lot of people feel the biggest reason … students aren’t going is because of costs.” view article arw

Childcare is about to get a whole lot easier for many Irving parents. The Irving Independent School District announced Tuesday that it will provide free daylong pre-K programs for qualifying students starting in August 2020. The "full-day" program will be offered at every single elementary school in the district and will specifically be for 4-year-olds, the district said in its announcement.  view article arw

You don't usually meet city council members who aren't tall enough to see over the desks.  But, then again, you don't usually see so many smiles at a council meeting. "This is our favorite council meeting of the entire year," said Mayor Mike Foreman. view article arw

Seniors in high school are teaching one-on-one cellphone lessons this year at the Stanford House as the senior activity center expands its partnership with Gainesville Independent School District. Seniors in the Gainesville High School National Honor Society sat with 14 senior adults Monday morning, Oct. 7, teaching them one on one how to use their cellphones’ tools and apps. It was the first of a monthly class series this year pairing high school students with elderly Cooke County residents. Chris Glover, NHS adviser at the high school, said the project benefits both the high school seniors and the Stanford House seniors. view article arw

What Does It All Mean?

October 1608:30 AM
 

Our data-driven experts have been hard at work analyzing the new numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2018 American Community Survey.  The numbers showed that Texas has the worst healthcare coverage in the country, stagnant income levels and higher poverty rates than in previous years. But there are policy solutions within reach for Texas!  Highlights from the data include: view article arw

A local school district is looking to spread the word on a learning disability that many students are struggling with not only locally but all across the globe. UISD Board members, educators and a representative from the City of Laredo came together at Judith Zaffirini Elementary for this year’s district-wide Dyslexia Awareness Proclamation. According to school officials, one in five students suffers from dyslexia. view article arw

The Dallas Independent School District is taking parents at Nathaniel Hawthorne Elementary in Pleasant Grove back to school. On Tuesday afternoon, nearly two dozen parents came to a cooking class in the school gym. "Let's go to the garlic," DISD Chef Trina Nelson said to the class. "Holding the knife tight, ok? Just like that...easy right?" The focus of the weekly class is on changing habits to eat healthier. view article arw

The student population at Hill Elementary doubled in a few years' time, from 500 to 1,000. And that's created congestion on Austin Woods Drive, a street in front of the school. It's so bad that every morning during drop-off, drivers, walkers, bikers and scooters all have to share the same road. Jenny De La Rosa said it frightens her when she walks her two children to school. view article arw

Teachers, administrators, students and family celebrated Bonham Middle School’s 50th anniversary in the Temple Independent School District on Wednesday evening. Guests were greeted by Bonham cheerleaders as they headed into the gymnasium and a musical performance by the school’s band followed. The celebration provided an opportunity for Bonham Middle School Principal Sandra Atmar and former principals to speak on their experiences, and the successes that have come through the 50-year-old TISD campus. view article arw

Graduating from college can be challenging and stressful. In fact, according to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, only a small percentage of those who age out of foster care and enroll in college will graduate. Caroline Nolen is a junior at the University of Texas at San Antonio, and when she's done with her undergraduate work, she's hoping to go to law school, but she said getting to that point wasn't easy. view article arw

The third and final forum in an effort to increase community involvement with the Killeen school district will take place Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Adams Chapel AME Church, 125 E. Arlo Road, in Harker Heights. John Craft, the superintendent of the Killeen Independent School District, will be at the forum presenting information to members of the community, said Philemon Brown, the event’s organizer. view article arw