EDUCATION: Public Education

Race in Education in Texas (video)

Check out full video from our conversation on race and education at the Texas Tribune symposium on race. Panelists include former Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams, Congressman Joaquin Castro, Paul Quinn College President Michael Sorrell and San Antonio ISD Assistant Superintendent Olivia Hernandez.

State Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo, and state Rep. Dan Huberty, R-Houston.
State Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo, and state Rep. Dan Huberty, R-Houston.

Bills would continue graduation committees for students who failed STAAR

State Sen. Kel Seliger and state Rep. Dan Huberty have filed bills that would keep individual graduation committees, which allow students to graduate even if they fail required exams. The law creating these committees will expire in September.

Bills would continue graduation committees for students who failed STAAR

State Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo, and state Rep. Dan Huberty, R-Houston.
State Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo, and state Rep. Dan Huberty, R-Houston.

State Sen. Kel Seliger and state Rep. Dan Huberty have filed bills that would keep individual graduation committees, which allow students to graduate even if they fail required exams. The law creating these committees will expire in September.

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News App: The Texas Public Schools Database

School finance, testing fiasco topped 2016 education news

Protesters at a press conference held by Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick in May, 2016 calling on Fort Worth Independent School District Superintendent Kent Scribner to resign over the district's bathroom guidelines for transgender students.
Protesters at a press conference held by Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick in May, 2016 calling on Fort Worth Independent School District Superintendent Kent Scribner to resign over the district's bathroom guidelines for transgender students.

School districts lost a court case that could have forced the state to reform its school finance system, and federal officials toured Texas to investigate claims that special education services were arbitrarily capped. 

Trump administration could boost voucher push

Donald Trump rallies a crowd of veterans at Drake University on Jan. 28, 2016, while other Republican presidential candidates hold a final Des Moines debate prior to the Iowa caucuses.
Donald Trump rallies a crowd of veterans at Drake University on Jan. 28, 2016, while other Republican presidential candidates hold a final Des Moines debate prior to the Iowa caucuses.

A Trump administration may put wind in the sails of Texas lawmakers pushing for "school choice," allowing parents to use taxpayer money to send their children to charter, private and religious schools. 

State education board focuses again on teaching of evolution

State Board of Education Chair Barbara Cargill questions textbook publishers on the contents of their publications at a meeting in Austin on Monday, October 20, 2014.
State Board of Education Chair Barbara Cargill questions textbook publishers on the contents of their publications at a meeting in Austin on Monday, October 20, 2014.

Language challenging evolution was removed from high school biology standards because it seemed too difficult for students to analyze and evaluate, the state education board was told Wednesday.

Texas education board rejects Mexican-American studies textbook

Carolina Hernandez, a student in the Houston ISD, spoke during a news conference at the Texas Education Agency on Nov. 15, 2016, about a proposed Mexican-American studies textbook that educators and activists have criticized. As Hernandez spoke, she glanced at a box holding 15,000 petitions against the textbook.
Carolina Hernandez, a student in the Houston ISD, spoke during a news conference at the Texas Education Agency on Nov. 15, 2016, about a proposed Mexican-American studies textbook that educators and activists have criticized. As Hernandez spoke, she glanced at a box holding 15,000 petitions against the textbook.

In a 14-0 vote, the Texas State Board of Education rejected the adoption of a controversial Mexican-American studies textbook.

State Board of Education set to vote on Mexican-American studies book

State Sen. José Menéndez, D-San Antonio, speaks during a press conference at the Texas Education Agency on Tuesday, November 15, 2016 regarding a proposed Mexican-American studies textbook that educators and activists are calling racist. The advocacy group, Texas Freedom Network, along with educators, and activists are asking the State Board of Education to reject the Mexican American heritage textbook.
State Sen. José Menéndez, D-San Antonio, speaks during a press conference at the Texas Education Agency on Tuesday, November 15, 2016 regarding a proposed Mexican-American studies textbook that educators and activists are calling racist. The advocacy group, Texas Freedom Network, along with educators, and activists are asking the State Board of Education to reject the Mexican American heritage textbook.

The State Board of Education will vote this week on whether to accept a Mexican-American studies textbook opponents have called racist and inaccurate.

Across Texas, growing clusters of unvaccinated children

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Georgia Moore, front left, was diagnosed with leukemia, and had to undergo chemotherapy that affected her immune system. She had to stay home from school because her parents worried unvaccinated kids might make her sick.
Georgia Moore, front left, was diagnosed with leukemia, and had to undergo chemotherapy that affected her immune system. She had to stay home from school because her parents worried unvaccinated kids might make her sick.

Even though statewide levels of vaccinations remain high, public health officials are increasingly worried about the geographic areas where parents are choosing not to vaccinate their children. 

Texas foster youth struggle to get college degrees

Briana Dovi, who graduated from University of Texas at Arlington, is one of the few foster youths in Texas that has taken advantage of the free tuition waiver provided by the state.
Briana Dovi, who graduated from University of Texas at Arlington, is one of the few foster youths in Texas that has taken advantage of the free tuition waiver provided by the state.

Although Texas offers free tuition waivers and other benefits to ease foster youths' transition to higher education, the number of students using the resources has declined.

The Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, Sid W. Richardson Foundation, RGK Foundation, Burdine Johnson Foundation, and Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation have supported public education coverage at The Texas Tribune.

South Texans claim school districts withheld special ed

Vanessa Tijerina addresses a U.S. Department of Education panel about her 13-year-old special needs child on Dec. 13, 2016, in Edinburg, Texas. Federal education officials toured Texas to hear community members' experiences with special education, as part of an investigation into whether Texas is capping services for students with disabilities.
Vanessa Tijerina addresses a U.S. Department of Education panel about her 13-year-old special needs child on Dec. 13, 2016, in Edinburg, Texas. Federal education officials toured Texas to hear community members' experiences with special education, as part of an investigation into whether Texas is capping services for students with disabilities.

Rio Grande Valley parents and educators told federal and state officials Tuesday that school districts lacked knowledge and resources to get students special education services that comply with federal law.

Feds, TEA to tour Texas for public comment on special ed

Texas Education Agency Commissioner Mike Morath discusses public education issues with Tribune CEO Evan Smith at the Austin Club in Austin, Texas on May 17, 2016.
Texas Education Agency Commissioner Mike Morath discusses public education issues with Tribune CEO Evan Smith at the Austin Club in Austin, Texas on May 17, 2016.

U.S. Department of Education and Texas Education Agency officials will hit five Texas cities to ask the public about their experience with special education, part of an ongoing investigation of the state's services.