Woodrow

All three of our homes in this week’s roundup of open houses are in the Woodrow Wilson feeder pattern, including 5939 Velasco Ave., listed by Briana Hill with Rogers Healy and Associates.

It’s not uncommon to hear that house hunters in Dallas are looking for homes in the Woodrow Wilson High School feeder pattern — it’s known for its academics, it’s fine arts programs, and its athletics, as well as its strong alumni and parent presence.

Suffice to say, if you’ve never checked out Woodrow Wilson High, you owe it to yourself to investigate, because there are tons of reasons it’s one of the most sought-after public high schools.

Every Thursday, we bring you our pick of the hottest North Texas properties in our CandysDirt.com Open Houses of the Week. These are the places you don’t want to miss that weekend. And this week, our homes all have one Dallas ISD feeder pattern in common — the Woodrow Wilson High School feeder pattern. 

Want to see your choices? Jump with us, won’t you? (more…)

electionsThe cutoff to file to run for the Dallas city council, Dallas mayor, and Dallas ISD trustee seats open was 5 p.m. Feb. 15, and with 64 people total filing paperwork for the May elections, there are two things we can tell you for certain: Some races will likely resemble the Thunderdome, and you’ll be needing to head to the polls twice, because some of these races will undoubtedly land in a runoff.

So who’s running? We’re providing a list below. Bear in mind this list is in alphabetical order, not the order they will appear on the ballot, because that is done by drawing and will happen in a few days.

The mayoral race has drawn 12 candidates — real estate developer Mike Ablon, Oak Cliff businessman Albert Black, Dallas city council member Scott Griggs, State Rep. Eric Johnson, former Socialist Workers Party presidential candidate Alyson Kennedy, philanthropist Lynn McBee, civic leader Regina Montoya, Dallas resident, Heriberto Ortiz, Dallas resident Miguel Patino, environmentalist Stephen Smith, Dallas ISD trustee Miguel Solis, and former state representative Jason Villalba. Ortiz, Patino, and Smith’s petition signatures have not been qualified at press time.

And Jon gave us a sneak preview of the surprise filing of Laura Miller, who will challenge incumbent Jennifer Staubach Gates for the District 13 seat, we now know who the rest of the names on area ballots will be, too. Ready? Let’s jump. (more…)

charterA month after a proposed policy to partner with nonprofits to run certain Dallas ISD schools was taken off the agenda for the Dallas ISD board of trustees regular meeting in January, the matter will once again be brought before the board at its briefing Thursday.

Board briefings are held once a month, prior to the regular board meeting, and are an opportunity for the board to discuss and get up to speed on items that will likely appear on the regular board meeting agenda. It’s also the time they are briefed on district progress. Dallas ISD holds their board briefings at 11:30 a.m. on Thursdays.

Although there had been several posts on Facebook and other social media sites insisting a special called meeting would be held at 9 a.m. Thursday to vote on the policy, ostensibly to hamper public comment, a call to Dallas ISD news and information director Robyn Harris revealed that the only meeting scheduled for that day was the board briefing, and that the policy was on the agenda for discussion.

An email to board president Edwin Flores to ascertain if a 9 a.m. meeting would be called went unanswered, but the likelihood of an early meeting to vote on something that is on the agenda to discuss at the board briefing (as well as on the agenda at the regular board meeting on Feb. 28) is doubtful.

At last month’s board meeting, the agenda originally indicated that trustees would discuss a policy that would set up the framework for the district to take advantage of a state law — SB 1882 —  that was passed in the last legislative session. That policy would permit the district to partner with specific nonprofits to run certain schools.

The law incentivized partnerships between school districts and charter schools by offering about $1,800 per student in additional funding for campuses that are in a partnership. It also was a third option for improvement required schools that were facing closure, and provided a bit of reprieve from that. (more…)

After a meeting to discuss the fate of the Dallas ISD District 4 seat that had been held by Jaime Resendez was canceled last week, the rest of the board was able to hammer out the details on what steps would be taken to appoint someone to the seat.

The board first voted to accept Resendez’s resignation. The trustee came under fire after it was discovered last month that he was living outside District 4 by a few blocks.

Resendez had already announced that he did not intend to run for re-election, opting to instead run to replace Dallas city council member Rickey Don Callahan, who had announced he would not be running for another term.

However, as of today, Resendez has not filed to run for that seat either — Yolanda Williams is the sole filer. Resendez has until Feb. 15 to file.

Once the matter of his resignation was handled, the board then turned to crafting a timeline and requirements for gathering applicants to fill the unexpired term — which amounts to three or four months.

The meeting was not without some fireworks, however. Trustee Joyce Foreman, angered that she only just received a timeline when the previous (and canceled) meeting had no mention of a timeline, grilled board attorney Carlos Lopez. (more…)

Photo courtesy Dallas ISD

Pretty much immediately after former WFAA-reporter-cum-political-candidate Brett Shipp posted that it appeared Dallas ISD school board trustee Jaime Resendez didn’t live in his district, we started poking around, too.

Probably just like everyone else.

And the Dallas Morning News did a few stories. Shipp continuously tweets about it. And we continued to quietly try to figure out what in the Sam Hill was going on, and let me tell ya, if you read all those stories, it’s still confusing.

What we do know: Resendez moved out of his District 4 sometime in the late summer/early fall of 2017. According to the Dallas Central Appraisal District, the deed to the home on Mission Hills Lane, which is just a few blocks out of District 4, transferred to Resendez from the seller on Aug. 30, 2017.

He also did not claim a homestead exemption on the property. (more…)

GreatSchools

W.T. White High has a 4/10 ranking from GreatSchools. We explain why that’s a problem.

Back away from the Realtor.com, guys. Scroll away from the school rankings on that adorable, completely updated cottage you’ve been loving from afar, but won’t go look at because of its GreatSchools rating, because we’re about to upend your faith in those numbers.

I’ve had this column in my back pocket, waiting to be written, since Candy hired me several years ago.  And I say this with all the love in my heart, but if you’ve been holding back on purchasing a home in this neighborhood or that neighborhood because the school ratings are low, you’re using less-than-complete data. (more…)

schoolsRealtors, take note — there are four schools, in particular, you should know about as you go out today to sell homes in Dallas or Grand Prairie today.

We have the details, plus market reports, in this week’s roundup of real estate news. (more…)

Pastors for Texas Children honored First United Methodist Church-Dallas senior minister Andy Stoker with its “Hero For Texas Children” award Thursday. Pictured, from left, Stoker, Dallas Judge Clay Jenkins, Dallas ISD superintendent Michael Hinojosa, and Pastors for Texas Children executive director Charles Foster Johnson. (Photo courtesy Angela Patterson/FUMC-Dallas)

[Editor’s note: Merry Christmas! This week, we’re taking time off to focus on our loved ones, so we are sharing some of our favorite stories from this year. Keep an eye out for our top features from the archives as we rest and get ready for a brilliant 2019! Cheers, from Candy and the entire staff at CandysDirt.com!]

It may have been unusually — for Dallas — chilly Thursday morning, but the warmth inside First United Methodist Church downtown was effusive when an organization of faith leaders held a breakfast gathering to talk about their unified efforts to advocate for public education.

Pastors for Texas Children members were also there to honor the church’s senior minister, Andy Stoker, with their “Hero for Texas Children” award, recognizing him for leading his church in work to provide assistance and care for children in Dallas ISD schools. (more…)