Colleague mulls removing school finance judge
(Austin American-Statesman © 06/20/2014)
An outside judge is weighing whether a colleague presiding over Texas’ long-running school finance trial should be removed because of perceived bias. San Antonio-based Judge David Peeples will hold a hearing Friday in the Austin courtroom of fellow state District Judge John Dietz.
Judge Rules in Favor of DISD Home Rule Appointments
(KDAF (WB) 33 – Dallas © 06/20/2014)
It’s time for everyone’s favorite topic: Home Rule. You know, Dallas ISDs assignment to shake-up the district. Just one problem, the local teachers union, Alliance AFT, filed a lawsuit against DISD. The union was upset with how the district was handling the topic. According to Home Rule laws, appointing members to the commission is illegal; members should be elected.
County districts give themselves exemplary ratings
(Cleburne Times-Review © 06/19/2014)
County school districts recently presented exemplary and recognized self-ratings. Earlier this year, as part of a new accountability rating through House Bill 5, districts were required to rate themselves in community and student engagement. The requirement did not come from Texas Education Agency but the Legislature, TEA spokesperson Debbie Ratcliff said.
What Texans need to know about Common Core
(Dallas Morning News © 06/19/2014)
Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott issued an opinion yesterday related to the Common Core school standards, a voluntary national program Texas is not participating in. In spite of Texas’ non-participation, Common Core has become a political issue in the state. So what do Texans need to know about Common Core? Start with this: “The Common Core curriculum” is like Darth Vader.
Gaps in Texas STAAR exam scores widen among races, income levels
(Dallas Morning News © 06/09/2014)
If STAAR results are any measure, Texas is failing its lowest-performing students. Despite government-mandated programs for many thousands of test-challenged kids, three years of scores show no benefit. In every test at every grade, groups of students who scored lower when STAAR rolled out three years ago are still behind — and in most cases, the gaps are growing.
Texas public education officials on Friday released the final list of 68 charters and school districts that will pilot a new method for assessing teachers this fall. The new method would initially require districts participating in the pilot to base 20 percent of teacher grades on “student growth” data, which would include student scores on state standardized tests for about one-quarter of public school teachers.
Dallas Morning News
Texas high school students again struggled in English on the state’s end-of-course exams this year, but results were more positive in algebra, biology and U.S. history – thanks in part to low passing standards.