Dallas ISD

Trustee Edwin Flores’s (left) proposed changes to a policy governing the district process for school closures has some worried, including fellow trustee Bernadette Nutall (right).

Adjourning by 8:30 p.m., November’s Dallas ISD school board meeting Thursday could’ve been a lot longer if a proposed policy change had not been pulled from the agenda.

Social media (if you knew where to look) has been on fire recently with rumors that Lincoln and Madison high schools were facing closure. The idea that these closures are possible, it seems, stems from a proposed change to a district policy that governs the procedure the district takes to close a school. (more…)

Dallas ISD

Hopefully this is the last time we have to explain this.

After last week’s vote to dismantle Dallas County Schools, I learned that there are a few people that — despite lots of news coverage that should explain the difference — think Dallas County Schools and Dallas ISD are the same thing.

The day after the election, in fact, someone told me, “I voted to abolish DISD.” I took a deep breath, and said, “You mean DCS?”

“Same thing,” the person replied.

(more…)

Hinojosa

(Photo courtesy Dallas ISD)

A lot may be up in the air right now about how students will be transported after this year, Dallas ISD superintendent Michael Hinojosa does know that the district’s entry into the bus business was a reluctant — but necessary — one.

Hinojosa met with reporters Wednesday morning and stressed that bus service would remain up and running despite voters choosing to dissolve Dallas County Schools, and there would be no disruption in service to students who rely on them.

“I don’t want to be in the bus business,” Hinojosa said. “However, this is an important service.”

“We need this service. Don’t wanna be in it. It’s not fun. It’s hard work. However, it’s very important that this service be available to our community.” (more…)

Dallas ISD

Dallas ISD and several nonprofits forged a partnership to address the needs of homeless students when trustees approved the effort last night (Photo courtesy Flickr/Arul Irudayam).

It was quite possibly the shortest school board meeting Dallas ISD has had in quite some time, and some board members were nearly giddy.

“I would just like to point out that it’s 7:45,” said trustee Dustin Marshall, right before board president Dan Micciche gaveled the meeting to a close.

In an often fractious board, that bonhomie was due in large part to an 8-0 vote to approve a collaborative effort called After8ToEducate, which will provide a groundbreaking shelter and drop-in center for Dallas ISD students who are homeless.

The partnership will include the district and nonprofits Promise House and CitySquare. Social Venture Partners Dallas is another partner. (more…)

eviction

According to a new report from ApartmentList.com, Dallas is among the top five large metro areas when it comes to evictions (Photo courtesy TaxRebate.org.uk).

A new study of rental insecurity and eviction rates found that Dallas is at the top of the list of major metro areas when it comes to frequency of eviction.

In fact, at a rate of 5.6 percent, Dallas is tied with Indianapolis and behind only Atlanta, Phoenix and Memphis, the report released today by ApartmentList.com revealed.

“We estimate an eviction rate of 5.6 percent for the Dallas metro, which is the No. 5 highest rate of the nation’s 50 largest metros,” said Chris Salviati, a housing economist with ApartmentList.com.

Drilling down further, Salviati and his team found that of that 5.6 percent, low-income renters accounted for 8.1 percent. Middle-income and high-income renters accounted for 6.3 percent and 2.8 percent of evictions respectively.

According to U.S. Census data, as of July 2016, Dallas had a little more than one million housing units, and 51.2 percent of those were owner-occupied. Using those numbers and the 5.6 percent rate found in Salviati’s report, it would seem that as many as 28,757 a year could be evicted. (more…)

students

Area high school students enrolled in construction trade vocational programs were able to network with contractors, builders, and vendors at the Dallas Builders’ Show, held last week in Plano. (Photo: Bethany Erickson)

Area builders and contractors who attended the Dallas Builders’ Show last week didn’t just get the lowdown on the latest in engineered wood or backsplashes – they also had the opportunity to meet the students that will be their future workforce.

The Dallas Builders Association has made good on its desire to help local high school programs by providing networking and internship opportunities to students learning construction trades.

Last spring, the group hosted a group of students from Skyline High School’s construction program at one of Classic Urban Homes job sites.

Last Thursday, the DBA hosted more than 100 students from several area high schools at its annual trade show event in Plano. Students from Arlington, Dallas, Garland, and Grand Prairie mingled with builders and vendors, snagging business cards and making connections. (more…)

Lincoln

The film and TV program at Lincoln High’s Humanities and Communications Magnet has had its share of successes. Now the community can be a part of that (Photos courtesy Tony Boone).

Not long after I started writing about the ways our community can support Dallas ISD teachers and programs, a reader reached out to me to tell me about Lincoln High School.

“You should definitely look into Lincoln,” the reader insisted. “They do amazing things there.”

Lincoln High is also home to a humanities and communications magnet school, and a collegiate prep academy that offers career pathways in hospitality management and logistics, partnering with Omni Hotels, FedEx, El Centro College and the University of North Texas-Dallas.

Maybe a week after that reader reached out, someone else passed along a Facebook post about its film and TV program, and not long after that, I found myself trading emails with instructor Tony Boone, who shepherds students through the aspects of film and television production at the Dallas ISD school. (more…)

food pantries

Food pantries like the one at Woodrow High School help discreetly feed students and their families when times are tough. (Photo courtesy Nancy Wilson)

If you just walked down the halls of Woodrow Wilson High, you probably wouldn’t be able to tell that some students would need the assistance of a food pantry.

But, like far too many students that attend Dallas ISD schools, the only meals some kids at Woodrow got came from the cafeteria. There simply wasn’t food at home. (more…)