More tax dollars are spent on public education than on any other governmental program in the state. Public elementary and secondary education in Texas is financed by a combination of state, local, and federal revenue, a system that has produced inequities among the state's 1,030 traditional school districts and 207 charter operators.
As of 2010, more than 4 ...
Galbraith on grass, federal money and efforts to prevent another dust bowl, Ergenbright on school suspensions and who gets punished; Aguilar's interview with Alan Bersin, whose job is to keep the U.S./Mexico border secure, M. Smith on why it would be harder than you think to ditch the 14th Amendment, Adler and me on whether controversy is politically contagious, Ramshaw on the flap over funding for the state's institutions for the disabled (it's not about the money), my meditation on the state's fiscal woes (including a $1.3 billion deficit in the current budget), Philpott on proposed cuts to the state's food stamp program, Grissom on the push by Hidalgo County officials for a special election that might not be legal; Hamilton on the seven Texas universities that are making a play for Tier One status and Stiles on the mid-year cash-on-hand numbers reported by campaigns and political action committees: The best of our best from August 16 to 23, 2010.Full Story
Stiles on Bill White's donor-appointees, M. Smith on a form of meritless lawsuit that's still legal in Texas, Ramshaw on what federal health care reform means for the future of physician-owned specialty hospitals, Galbraith's interview with the chairman of the Public Utility Commission, Philpott on the latest flap over federal education funding, Grissom on the finally-in-compliance Dallas County Jail, Titus on the oiled pelicans of the BP spill, Hamilton's interview with the new chancellor of the Texas State University System, Ramsey on the political and legal definitions of residency, Hu on Barack Obama's visit to Austin and Aguilar on what the U.S. could be doing to aid Mexico: The best of our best from August 9 to 13, 2010.Full Story
Ben, Ross, Evan and Matt talk about President Obama's visit to Texas and who didn't want to be seen with him, the battle over strings attached to federal education money, Bill White's donor-appointees and the legal and political definitions of residency.Full Story
Washington dangled bait in front of Gov. Rick Perry on Tuesday, but the governor still isn't biting.Full Story
Can a $3 million marketing campaign to promote higher education change the culture of a country-sized state in which just 27 percent of the population has a college degree or certificate? It worked for cancer ...Full Story
Thevenot on bogus public school accountability rankings, Garcia-Ditta on what locals think of increased patrols on the border, Stiles and Ramsey on where Kay Bailey Hutchison's donors have landed, Grissom on the pay gap between state and local police, Cervantes on how tweaks to the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder will impact Texas, M. Smith on the sinking prospects for an East Texas wetlands project, Ergenbright on the challenge of educating autistic children, Aguilar on efforts to legalize medicinal marijuana, Ramshaw on former foster children having trouble getting records from the state and Burnson on public health officials battling imported infectious diseases: The best of our best from August 2 to 6, 2010.Full Story
Texas will sue the federal government, yet again, if Texas-specific requirements are not removed from budget legislation that passed the U.S. Senate today, according to Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.Full Story
After a decade in which Texas has seen a 400 percent increase in the number of children with autism, lawmakers are wrestling with how best to educate the afflicted — and how to pay for it.Full Story
Officials announcing controversy-laden public school ratings Friday could barely contain their upbeat unease.Full Story
How can Texas rank last in the nation — 51st — in the percentage of adults with high school diplomas, and simultaneously rank 22nd in the percentage attending at least some college?Full Story
In the latest clash between the Houston Independent School District and those who question its use of "value-added data" to grade and sometimes fire teachers, state Sen. Mario Gallegos Jr., D-Houston, grilled an HSID representative at Tuesday's Senate Education Committee hearing over what he decried as a transparency issue for the district.Full Story
A new political action committee is attacking Gov. Rick Perry with a television ad playing on a familiar theme: Perry's high-class living. The ad starts airing tonight in markets across Texas.Full Story
Hoping to tackle the long-standing challenge of financing charter school facilities, the State Board of Education is considering taking on a novel and controversial role: landlord. SBOE member David Bradley, R-Beaumont, wants to use $100 million from the $23 billion Permanent School Fund to buy properties and then lease them back to charter schools, which have historically struggled with capital costs. Critics say the elected board can't possibly fulfill the mandate of the Fund — to invest for maximum return — while at the same time cutting charters a good deal.Full Story
M. Smith's interview with the new chair of the Texas GOP, Philpott on Republicans and Tea Partiers living in harmony, Aguilar on Immigration and Customs Enforcement's not-yet-released strategic plan, Ramshaw's tragic tale of out-of-state kids in Texas treatment centers, Grissom on how budget cuts could impact juvenile justice, Stiles' awesome new population app, Galbraith on the decline of the Ogallala Aquifer, Hamilton's interview with the commissioner of higher education and the debut of Hu's new video debate series: The best of our best from June 14 to 19, 2010.Full Story