reports on politics and education for the Tribune, which she joined in November 2009. She writes about the effects of the state budget, school finance reform, accountability and testing in Texas public schools. Her political coverage has included congressional and legislative races, as well as Gov. Rick Perry's presidential campaign, which she followed to Iowa and New Hampshire.
In 2013, she received a National Education Writers Association award for "Death of a District," a series on school closures. After earning a bachelor's degree in English from Wellesley College, she moved to Austin in 2008 to enter law school at the University of Texas.
A San Antonio native, her work has also appeared in Slate, where she spent a year as an editorial intern in Washington D.C.
UPDATED:A measure targeting a Turkish charter school network was added to major legislation from Senate Education Chairman Dan Patrick that would increase the number of publicly funded, privately operated schools as it passed the Texas House on Thursday, 105-34.
At the start of the legislative session, bills that would strengthen the state's charter school system, overhaul teaching requirements and address accountability for underperforming school districts were a top priority for many advocacy groups and some lawmakers. Use our interactive to track their progress.
UPDATED: A divisive measure requiring the disclosure of certain unreported political donors passed the House on a 95-52 vote on Tuesday with little of Monday's debate. The measure now heads to Gov. Rick Perry.
Raise Your Hand Texas has been a key player this session, impacting bills like Sen. Dan Patrick's charter school legislation. The advocacy organization's influence in policy negotiations has won it both respect and exasperation in education circles.
As major charter school legislation awaits consideration in the House, school choice supporters gathered at a Capitol rally to hear from several lawmakers, including Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and state Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston.
The Senate version of House Bill 5, which it approved Monday, still allows students to complete diplomas in specialized areas, or "endorsements." But it changes the courses required to graduate under those endorsements.
Some critics of Texas' largely subjective state teacher evaluations want them to include more emphasis on measures of student performance like standardized exams. But with support among lawmakers to scale back testing, those efforts have hit a roadblock.
More than 80,000 fifth-graders and 60,000 eighth-graders in the state are at risk of being held back this year because of poor performance on state standardized tests under a Texas law banning social promotion.
UPDATED:A measure taking aim at the firm that develops the state's standardized tests briefly stalled legislation reducing high-stakes exams for elementary and middle school students before it finally passed the Texas House on Tuesday.
Against the recommendation of school leaders and amid skepticism from some lawmakers, the Texas Education Agency will continue working toward a transition to a public school accountability ratings system with grades of A through F.
The procedures that led to the state's five-year, $468 million standardized testing contract with Pearson were the focus of a Senate panel's hearing Tuesday on legislation that would change how the state handles future agreements.
All but 10 percent of a nearly $1 billion state fund intended to assist the poor with utility payments would be rebated to electric customers under a measure that preliminarily passed the Texas Senate on Monday.