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Texas News
Brackett ISD Selects Eliza Diaz as New Superintendent
On August 4, the Brackett ISD Board of Trustees voted to hire Eliza Diaz as the district’s new superintendent. Diaz most recently served as the interim superintendent in Brackett ISD. She began her career as a teacher in San Felipe Del Rio CISD.

Diaz has also served as assistant principal, principal, and campus administrator in San Felipe Del Rio CISD and Brackett ISD.
New Texas law has ‘In God We Trust’ signs popping up on campus as school begins
As the new school year starts, “In God We Trust” signs are popping up at schools across Texas under a new state law that requires schools to display them if they are donated.

The law was known as Senate Bill 797 and it was passed by the Legislature and enacted by Gov. Greg Abbott last year. It says schools “must display in a conspicuous place in each building of the school or institution a durable poster or framed copy of the United States national motto,” so long as it is donated to the school.

41 Texas school districts are now on 4-day school weeks. Here’s the full list
Because COVID-19 exacerbated teacher shortages around the state, more and more school districts have moved to four-day school weeks in recent years. While several followed the first Texas district that implemented the change in 2016, a whopping 27 districts are making the switch this year in hopes of attracting and retaining teachers. A total of 41 school districts have adopted the program.

See which school districts in your area are following the statewide trend in education.

Texas teachers collectively pay more than any other state in school supplies, report says
Texas teachers combine to pay more out of pocket for classroom supplies than their counterparts in other states, according to a new report.

My eLearning World, a web portal for online learning, said in a report Monday that Texas teachers are expected to spend $298 million overall on school supplies like books, pencils, snacks, and decor for the 2022-23 school year, more than any other state. A factor in Texas’ total figure is the number of teachers the state employs.

Texas can’t get enough Spanish-speaking teachers. Here’s one reason why
The number of English language learners in the state keeps growing, but bilingual educators are too few.

School districts across Texas are scrambling still to fill teaching positions. Teachers certified in bilingual education or English as a second language are particularly hard to find.

Too many roadblocks stand in the way of aspiring teachers, and we need state leaders and school officials to think creatively to get these potential educators to the finish line.

Upcoming Events
Serving Hispanic Students in Texas:
How is higher education stepping up to the task?
Tuesday, August 23 | 12 pm CST
Between 2019 and 2021, Texas colleges and universities lost 75,000 students. But despite this drop in enrollment, the number of Hispanic-serving campuses in Texas continues to grow.

Join the Texas Tribune on Tuesday, Aug. 23, in Brownsville or tune in online for a Texas Tribune event exploring what needs to happen to support Hispanic-serving institutions in our state, how they’ve adapted during the pandemic and what they’re doing to help students graduate.
Looking for a new opportunity?
Leadership opportunities available:
Take a look at who’s hiring:
National News
Biden Signs Climate Change Spending Package, But K-12 Schools Are Mostly Left Out
President Biden on Tuesday signed into law the most significant federal legislation to date tackling climate change, including a handful of provisions that will be of interest to school leaders and educators.

The law authorizes $430 billion in federal spending on incentives for companies and consumers to reduce their carbon footprint and invest in sustainable alternatives. Schools are not a major focus of the law, but the final version includes $50 million for schools to improve indoor air quality, and $400 million for states, school transportation associations, and other entities to spend on electric vehicles, like school buses.

Report: California’s Latinos lack political power
Latinos’ political power remains significantly underrepresented in California despite their plurality status, emerging studies and data points show.

Driving the news: In report last week, the UCLA Latino Policy and Politics Institute said it found Latinos woefully underrepresented on the most populous state’s boards and commissions appointed by the executive branch.

Just 18% of California boards and commissions members are Latino, though they account for four in 10 of the state’s residents. White non-Hispanics, who are 36.5% of the population, make up 48% of the appointments.

Report: Despite high completion, FAFSA ‘remains confusing’ for students and families
The percentage of college-bound students applying for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid has increased slightly, from 68% in 2020-21 to 70% in 2021-22, according to a poll conducted by Ipsos, an analytics company. However an even larger portion, 75%, were unaware the FAFSA application window starts in October. 

The report said FAFSA “remains confusing for students and families.”

Just over half of families, or 54%, are aware all students are eligible to submit an application, while a quarter believed it’s only for students from low-income households, and 36% of families said their income was too high. 

Gifted Summer Programs Skew White & Wealthy. Not Baltimore’s — And It’s Free
With national focus on using summer learning to recoup pandemic losses, Baltimore Emerging Scholars is among the no-cost offerings in the Charm City

The course is “Cloudy With a Chance of Science,” and James Ramirez places his hand-fashioned tin foil boat into a bin of water, squealing with excitement as he discovers it floats. The first grader and his classmates are learning about density by testing how many pebbles each students’ contraption will hold before it sinks.

New Addams Family Cast Photos Reveal Luis Guzmán As an Ode to the Original Gomez
As fans of Tim Burton and “The Addams Family” alike gear up to watch Netflix’s “Wednesday,” a creative reimagining that centers on fan-favorite Wednesday Addams, Vanity Fair has released a handful of exclusive images featuring the entire family, including Catherine Zeta-Jones and Luis Guzmán as Morticia and Gomez Addams, respectively.

The cast for the upcoming show is heavily Latino, including three of the four members of the Addams family itself. Some fans were surprised to learn that Zeta-Jones, who has played Latina characters on multiple occasions, is actually of Welsh descent.

Las Tienditas
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