Four mayors are focusing their time in office on education. Because of that, they're touring each other's cities to learn new ideas.
Former NBA star, and now the mayor of Sacramento, Kevin Johnson, walked the halls of Pre-K 4 SA's South Side model education center Friday. He told a panel consisting of San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro, Pre-K 4 SA CEO Kathy Bruck, and City Manager Sheryl Sculley, that he's jealous of San Antonio.
Federal education officials have denied a state waiver that would have eliminated the need to test eighth grade students' math skills more than once -- the denial is related to provisions in House Bill 5 that reduced the overall number of end-of-course exams.
Texas State University has launched a new program to help the children of Central Texas janitors and custodial workers go to college. The outreach effort seeks to empower parents with knowledge of childhood milestones that prepare young students for college.
The university’s P-16 initiative targets low-income families in Central Texas to educate children from pre-K through four years of college.
Thanks to a grant from CPS Energy, students at Jefferson High School are using state-of-the-art equipment to study renewable energy before their senior year. The program is part of the school’s architecture & environmental studies magnet.
In Blu Odam’s advanced energy and environmental technology class, his six students have been studying how to generate renewable energy.
“Wind energy, solar energy, biofuels which includes bio-diesel and ethanol, and hydro energy which includes damns and water falls,” Odam explained.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Texas has been attempting to change the Texas school system’s use-of-force policies for on-campus police officers since a November 2013 incident that left a Bastrop student in a coma (see video below).
"We sent a letter originally to the Commission on Law Enforcement and we were unfortunately told by them they didn’t have the authority to institute a ban," said Matt Simpson with the Austin office of the ACLU of Texas.
Six open-enrollment charter schools have been notified by the state that they are about to have their license revoked. A new law passed by the legislature gives the education commissioner greater authority, including revoking a failing charter school’s state license.
This week Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams sent six open-enrollment charter schools notices of mandatory revocation. Under the new law calling for more charter schools, the commissioner was also given additional authority to revoke failing charter schools state license.
State Sen. Wendy Davis, the likely Democratic nominee for governor, is calling on Attorney General Greg Abbott to come to the table and reach a settlement agreement in legal case challenging the constitutionality of the state’s school finance system.
As Travis County District Judge John Deitz weighs hundreds of pieces of evidence in the lawsuit, Davis called on Abbott, who is representing the state in the case and is Davis' likely Republican opponent in the governor's race, to make sure Texas school districts are adequately funded.
Travis County District Judge John Dietz has finished hearing closing arguments in the Texas school finance lawsuit and now attorneys from both sides await a decision. Dietz is taking his time to formulate an opinion because the case will likely go to the Texas Supreme Court.
"I think the evidence was pretty compelling that restoring some of the money just didn’t fix all the problems," said Houston attorney David Thompson, who represents a large group of schools in the lawsuit.