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. 

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:

How College Test Prep Favors Wealthy Students

Jan 14, 2020
AP

Many high school students spent the winter break preparing for the next round of SAT and ACT college entrance exams. Journalist Paul Tough has reported on students heading to college and the tests they have to take. He recently talked with Think host Krys Boyd about how decisions based on standardized test scores — rather than grades — usually favor applicants who come from wealthy families.

The University of Texas at Austin.
Tamir Kalifa / For The Texas Tribune

Seventeen employees at the University of Texas at Austin, including three faculty members and one research fellow, were found to have violated the flagship's sexual misconduct policies between November 2017 and December 2019, according to a university document released Jan. 9.

Dallas Portal Screen
Stella M. Chávez / KERA News

On a recent December morning, five twenty-somethings gathered inside a gold shipping container at Bonton Farms in Southeast Dallas. It was like a mini movie auditorium with a large projector screen. 

The Dallas Independent School District just earned a gold medal for its high-quality prekindergarten program.
LM Otero / Associated Press

The Dallas Independent School District just earned a gold medal for its high-quality prekindergarten program. The National Institute for Early Education Reseach studied 40 different big city pre-K programs across the country to issue the ratings.

Chef Rudy Vasquez
Bill Zeeble / KERA News

It's an ordinary fall day at the University of North Texas and Chef Rudy Vasquez is busy deep-frying one of today’s lunch specials, chicken fingers. Only, there’s no wheat on the flour-dredged meat.

Updated Friday at 11:04 a.m. ET.

Lawmakers have called for an investigation into a troubled student loan discharge program one day after an NPR report revealed that the program — meant to erase the student debts of borrowers with significant, permanent disabilities — wasn't helping the vast majority of those who are eligible.

Fort Worth English as a Second Language teacher, Sharon Darnell works with student Morsal Haidari at Seminary Hills Park Elementary. Darnell works with refugee students who haven't been in the U.S. very long learn the basics of English.
Lauren Rangel / KERA News

This fall, the Trump administration announced it's lowering the annual cap on the number of refugees allowed into the U.S. That change is affecting how Fort Worth Independent School District is teaching some of its newcomers.

Rune Mathisen

Were the reading and writing passages on standardized tests that Texas elementary and middle school students took this spring too challenging for their grade levels?

Britany Miller said that she's tried at multiple charter schools to get her son Nicholas Davis, 13, the support he needs. Nicholas was diagnosed with ADHD and depression in elementary school.
Laura Isensee / Houston Public Media

Twice, Britany Miller has asked for special education services and accommodations at two different Houston-area charter schools for her son, Nicholas Davis, who struggles with depression and an attention disorder. 

Interns in Fort Bend ISD's program to grow its staff of licensed specialists
Laura Isensee / Houston Public Media

In the last three years, Fort Bend schools have seen the demand for special education almost double. More teachers and parents are asking for children to be tested for a disability — which district leaders say is a huge step forward since the end of a Texas policy that denied services to tens of thousands of children for over a decade.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

A group of high school students has been diving into the world of soft-shells and sliders, and we’re not talking crab or tiny sandwiches. These kids are part of a lab class learning what field work is really like.

Susan Moreno works in the dual-language and International Baccalaureate program at J.L. Long Middle School.
Milken Family Foundation

A Dallas ISD Spanish teacher has won $25,000 for being one of the best teachers in the country. Susan Moreno from J.L. Long Middle School is the only Milken Educator Award winner in Texas.

Diane Tran
Bill Zeeble / KERA News

It’s 6:30 on a Tuesday night. Local brews, some cocktails, wine and food are filling tables at the Cambria hotel that looks out on Dallas’ still busy Elm Street. It’s lecture time. 

A budding business mixing spirits and scholars has come to Dallas. Profs and Pints is taking the traditional college class out of the lecture hall and into a bar. 

University of Michigan
Shutterstock

Students in high school may not realize it, but they're having to make lots of decisions that will likely determine their future. Journalist Paul Tough joined Krys Boyd on Think to talk about how the choices students make during the college admissions process can impact the rest of their life.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Thousands of Dallas ISD kids and their teachers transferred to different schools Wednesday. They were forced from their damaged home campuses because of the weekend's tornado. All Thomas Jefferson High School students are now attending classes at Thomas Edison school in west Dallas.

Yale university buildings in spring blue sky in New Haven, CT
Shutterstock

When students from low-income backgrounds enter top colleges the transition can be difficult. Harvard education professor Anthony Jack talks about some of the hurdles these students face in his new book "The Privileged Poor: How Elite Colleges Are Failing Disadvantaged Students."

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Beginning Wednesday, Dallas ISD students from tornado-damaged schools will head to different campuses. Thomas Jefferson High School and the surrounding neighborhood were hit hard by the weekend's severe weather. The school’s students will now have class at the old, empty Thomas Edison Middle School in west Dallas.

Dallas ISD Superintendent Michael Hinojosa offers details on how district students forced out of their schools by Sunday's tornado  damage will continue getting an education
Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Dallas ISD Superintendent Michael Hinojosa spent part of his Monday driving through parts of his ravaged school district to survey the damage.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

After years of preparation, classes are underway at Fort Worth’s newest medical school – a partnership between Texas Christian University and the University of North Texas Health Science Center. Officials are hoping to modernize medical education. The new school has injected a creative curriculum designed to improve the health of future doctors and patients.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Every year volunteers with the Dallas Regional Chamber get to be Principal for a Day at a Dallas school. Thursday, on the 20th anniversary of the program, more than 200 got the chance. KERA caught up with one of them at Sidney Lanier Expressive Arts Vanguard, in west Dallas.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath says despite recent improvements in public education, it's not enough. At the Dallas Regional Chamber lunch Monday, he urged hundreds of business leaders to get involved with public schools.

Courtesy of Richardson Independent School District

Some students in the Richardson Independent School District are getting a head start on paying for college. The district has announced a college savings plan in three of its schools with large numbers of students who are economically disadvantaged.

Stella Chávez / KERA News

Elías Valverde, a social studies teacher at Fort Worth's Paschal High School, spent a recent morning talking to his ninth-graders about the history of La Gran Plaza.

Shutterstock

Four out of 10 students who go to college end up with college debt but don’t graduate. David Kirp, a University of California, Berkeley professor and the author of "The College Dropout Scandal," recently joined Krys Boyd, host of Think, to talk about this problem.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

It began as an experiment more than four years ago in a handful of struggling Dallas schools.  Now, the ACE program —for Accelerating Campus Excellence —  has blossomed into a turnaround program well beyond Dallas. But these programs are pricey. Can districts afford them in the long run?

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

School starts today for many students across North Texas. We find out what’s new and different at some of the biggest districts.

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Just as school is kicking off across the state, school districts and individual campuses in Texas got their report cards Thursday. Education leaders released ratings using an A through F grading scale.  Dallas got a B; Fort Worth got C — and both districts saw more failing schools.

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With days to go before school starts, some Irving ISD parents are scrambling for after school care.  That means after-school programs at nearly half the district’s campuses have been cancelled.  

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Some physicians knew they wanted to be doctors since grade school. Others figured it out after taking classes in science and technology or by spending a week in a program like Fort Worth’s Junior Medical School.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Good nutrition is essential to staying healthy, but pulling it off on a tight budget — or when you’re sick — can be tough. And that’s when it’s even more important.

So the Tarrant Area Food Bank offers free Cooking Matters classes that teach affordable nutrition to low income families and cancer survivors.

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