Education | KERA News

Education

Liberty High School in Frisco has grown rapidly and become more diverse since opening in 2006.
Credit Lara Solt / KERA News special contributor

Every week, KERA reporters go inside the classroom, meeting students, teachers and administrators, to explore the latest in education in North Texas. KERA's ongoing education coverage is part of the national public broadcasting initiative American Graduate

Explore in-depth education multimedia projects: Race, Poverty and the Changing Face of Schools, a look at the changing demographics at four North Texas high schools; What’s Next For The Class Of 17?, stories about North Texas students from eighth grade to graduation; Homeless in High School, how schools and kids deal with homelessness; and Generation One, meet first-generation Texans who are reshaping schools.

Support for KERA’s education coverage is made possible in part by:

Stella M. Chávez / KERA News

Monday is the first day of school for North Texas students. Getting them there will be up the thousands of bus drivers who are on the road practicing their routes. We tagged along for the ride with one longtime driver in the Fort Worth Independent School District.

Pictures: It's Back To School Across North Texas

Aug 24, 2015
Makeba Potter

It’s the first day of school for kids across North Texas. No more sleeping in! We’re posting your back-to-school photos below.

Across North Texas, teachers and staff are gearing up for the return to school. In Dallas, the district held its annual back-to-school rally, or convocation, on Wednesday. There was music, dancing and a pep talk from Interim Superintendent Michael Hinojosa.

Chris Rabig / Flickr.com

School starts next week for most Texas students. But for more than 60 Dallas child advocacy experts, the homework has already begun. They met this week for a look at a Texas Legislature report card on children’s issues, and to outline assignments for the next legislative session.

Dallas ISD

As Dallas continues the search for its next school superintendent, some non-profits and outside organizations are watching closely. These groups work to bridge educational, economic and social gaps in the district.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

KERA is examining why superintendents of large urban school districts don’t last long, and why some of the country’s biggest cities are looking for top school leaders. Districts from Chicago to Los Angeles, Minneapolis to Kansas City, are seeking superintendents. 

Dallas ISD

Sam Tasby, the key figure in the Dallas school desegregation case, has died at age 93.  Tasby was a quiet man who spoke little about his long legal battle and its impact on schools and the city of Dallas.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

With the start of school approaching, the Skyline High football team is tackling a tough subject that often grabs national headlines: domestic and dating violence. 

Stephanie Kuo / KERA News Special Contributor

As Dallas ISD looks for a permanent superintendent, parents have a bit of advice for the district’s next leader. They agree that the next superintendent should cut down on politics, communicate and collaborate with the community.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

The Dallas school district continues its superintendent search. Michael Hinojosa has been the interim superintendent since June. He stepped in after Mike Miles resigned. Hinojosa talked to reporters Wednesday about how he’s preparing for the upcoming school year.

Stella M. Chávez / KERA News

Over the past few weeks, KERA's American Graduate project has explored why it’s so tough to lead a large urban school district. Both Dallas and Fort Worth are looking for superintendents. This week, we look at how changes in urban districts have made the job even harder.

Stella M. Chávez / KERA News

At the Pike Park summer camp in Dallas, kids do the usual summer camp stuff -- play games, dance, draw and eat. What makes this camp different? The kids are also learning about where they're going to camp -- the once-thriving uptown neighborhood known as Little Mexico.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

KERA is looking into the remarkable number of help-wanted ads for school superintendents across the country, from Los Angeles to Newark to Fort Worth. Today we dig into the checkered history of the top job in Dallas. With Mike Miles’ departure last month, the district is looking for its eighth permanent leader in two decades. How has that turnover shaped a struggling district that’s the second-largest in the state?

Dixon School of the Arts / flickr.com

More than 230,000 students attend charter schools in Texas. And, on average, those students show less progress in reading and math than their peers in traditional public schools. That’s according to a new study out of Stanford University. But the report also shows some bright spots for charter schools since the last Texas study in 2009.

Fort Worth ISD

Dallas is searching for a new school superintendent. So is Fort Worth. They join districts coast to coast that are also looking for new leaders. Over the next few Tuesdays, KERA will explore why it's so tough for a big-city superintendent to survive, let alone thrive. We kick off the series with a conversation with Patricia Linares, the Fort Worth Independent School District's interim superintendent.

Stella M. Chávez / KERA News

The Annie E. Casey Foundation released its annual study on children’s poverty and well-being today. Last year, Texas performed pretty dismally. Not much has changed in 2015.

Stella M. Chávez / KERA News

The mayors of Dallas, Fort Worth and three other North Texas cities got together on Thursday with a single purpose – to tackle what’s known as the “skills gap.” A booming economy is producing jobs, but the mayors say too few people are coming out of school with the skills to do those jobs.

How Textbooks Can Teach Different Versions Of History

Jul 14, 2015

This summer there's been an intense debate surrounding the Confederate flag and the legacy of slavery in this country.

In Texas that debate revolves around new textbooks that 5 million students will use when the school year begins next month.

The question is, are students getting a full and accurate picture of the past?

Eleventh-grade U.S. history teacher Samantha Manchac is concerned about the new materials and is already drawing up her lesson plans for the coming year. She teaches at The High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, a public school in Houston.

Standardized tests tied to the Common Core are under fire in lots of places for lots of reasons. But who makes them and how they're scored is a mystery.

For a peek behind the curtain, I traveled to the home of the nation's largest test-scoring facility: San Antonio.

The facility is one of Pearson's — the British-owned company that dominates the testing industry in the U.S. and is one of the largest publishing houses behind these mysterious standardized tests.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

An oddball bit of presidential history gets made tonight in Dallas. Former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton will share a stage at the Bush Presidential institute with billionaire Shark Tank panelist and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban.

Stella M. Chávez / KERA News

In Texas, the debate over same-sex marriage has spilled out of county courthouses and into public libraries across Dallas-Fort Worth.

Not All Texas School Districts Will Bring Back Sodas And Fried Foods

Jul 1, 2015
Marjorie Kamys Cotera / Texas Tribune

Students eager to purchase soda and fried foods when they return to school in the fall may be disappointed, despite Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller's recent announcement that both will be welcome back on Texas public school campuses after a 10-year ban. 

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

He’s back. Former Dallas superintendent Michael Hinojosa was unanimously named interim superintendent by the school board late Friday.

Dallas ISD/YouTube

Dallas ISD Superintendent Mike Miles makes his final school board appearance Thursday night.  He announced his resignation on Tuesday. When Miles first arrived in Dallas, he had much different plans.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

A day after he announced his resignation, and a day before he leaves the job, Dallas ISD superintendent Mike Miles talked with Krys Boyd on KERA’s Think. Miles defended his record and talked about the district moving on.

Dallas ISD livestream / YouTube

Mike Miles, who pushed for controversial reforms in the Dallas Independent School District, announced Tuesday morning that he’s resigning as superintendent. 

For two decades, Texas has treated truancy as a criminal offense. That means most cases were prosecuted in adult courts where children, along with their parents, faced jail and fines of up to $1,500 for missing school — usually 10 or more unexcused absences.

Texas lawmakers now say this policy went too far. So last week, Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican, signed a law that no longer treats truancy as a Class C misdemeanor.

Lara Solt / For KERA News

North Dallas High School has the most homeless students in the Dallas Independent School District -- one out of eight are without a home. Many see North Dallas High as a center of innovation, thanks to its homeless outreach efforts.

Lara Solt / KERA News Special Contributor

For more than 15 years, Charles ‘CJ’ Johnson has unofficially fostered homeless kids from North Dallas High School.

Stella M. Chavez / KERA News

Over the next few days, thousands of young Texans will receive their diplomas. Some of those students squeaked by thanks to a new state law. High schoolers no longer have to pass all five end-of-course exams to graduate. 

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