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Texas News
UISD promotes Adriana Ramirez to Executive Director of Federal & State Programs
For the last 10 years, Adriana P. Ramirez has been the principal of United South High School working to empower students to become the next generation of independent and knowledgeable citizens by maintaining a caring culture of equity, trust and collaboration.

In her new role as Executive Director of Federal & State Programs, Ramirez will be responsible for a key department in the district overseeing programs such as McKinney Vento Social Services, Migrant, Family and Community Engagement, as well as organizing the yearly “UISD Parent Summit.”

TCEA 2023: Former Dallas Superintendent Shares Lessons in Ed Tech Innovation
Michael Hinojosa, former superintendent of the 16th largest school district in the nation, told a room full of educators at TCEA 2023 that Dallas is a tale of two cities: one of immense wealth and one of great poverty. Hinojosa has intimate knowledge of Dallas’s poverty. He has twice led the Dallas Independent School District, where he said, 90 percent of his students were economically disadvantaged, 95 percent were ethnic minorities, 72 percent were Latino and 48 percent were English-language learners.

During a presentation titled “How to Leverage Educational Technology as a Learning Strategy,” Hinojosa shared with educators the ways he used educational technology to make an impact on the 141,000 students in that district.

After-school program in Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD brings students, parents together to learn new languages
Brooklyn Scholebo looked at her mom for assurance before quietly saying, “Me gusta.”

Then she trailed off. Brooklyn, 8, could not think of the Spanish word for raspberries, her favorite fruit. But that’s OK. She’s still learning the language.

Brooklyn, a third-grader at Lake Pointe Elementary, has been learning Spanish through Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD’s World Language Academy, an after-school program in which parents and students can learn Spanish or American Sign Language.

Houston urgently needs Spanish-speaking doctors, leaders say, as workforce shortage gets worse
Alba Jiménez wishes she could avoid what she calls “the robot.”

During a recent uterine cancer screening at the University of Houston Family Care Center, the 40-year-old Honduran native, who speaks only Spanish, directed questions to a translator on an iPad instead of the doctor: Did everything on her ultrasound look normal? Would she be OK?

To her, the interaction was strange and impersonal. She later said she wanted to say more but thought she needed to keep questions simple.

‘Going Varsity in Mariachi’ Sundance Documentary Showcases Competitive High School Mariachi
In 2019, while filming a project along the US-Mexico border in Texas, directors Sam Osborn and Alejandra Vasquez came across one of the first fully sanctioned University Interscholastic League State Mariachi Festivals, where high school mariachi bands perform at the same competitive level as students in cheer, football, and marching band. The duo was surprised to hear that within a state so politically entrenched against immigration there was a publicly funded arts program that celebrated traditional Mexican culture. Osborn and Vasquez, who are both Mexican American, immediately knew that the subject was ripe material for a documentary. Eventually they found Edinburg North High School’s Mariachi Oro, who opened their doors and allowed the directors to capture a year in the life of a varsity mariachi squad. The result is “Going Varsity in Mariachi.” A 104 minute competition documentary seeking distribution at Sundance.

Affiliate Feature
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National News
The Growth of Hispanic Students and English Learners Nationwide—in Charts
The demographics of public school students are changing rapidly, including in the South. That means school districts must find ways to meet the needs of an increasingly Hispanic and multilingual student body, researchers and advocates say.

In Alabama, for instance, the mostly Hispanic English-learner population grew from about 2.4 percent to about 5 percent in the last 10 years. In the Russellville school district in the northern part of the state, English learners now make up a quarter of the student population.

Once Resistant, An Alabama Town Now Sees Its English Learners as Its Future
Marlena Young-Jones started her English-as-a-second-language class the way she always does: asking everyone to share something they did over the weekend or after school.

She called out each name in her thick, Southern drawl, drawing grins from her 2nd graders. Students launched into short stories, all in English, pausing occasionally to ensure proper pronunciation.

Playing Roblox on a tablet. Shopping with mom at Walmart. Getting a Happy Meal at McDonald’s. Pestering an older brother who recently arrived from Guatemala.

4 key takeaways from the 2023 ‘Condition of Education’ data report
While the days of virtual classes and widespread mask mandates are largely behind us, the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic still linger in many Massachusetts’ school districts. Schools across the state are adapting to a landscape of increased student needs from academic learning loss to mental and behavioral health struggles.

A new data report released Thursday from the Rennie Center for Education Research & Policy, a non-partisan education think tank, attempts to measure some of the ways the pandemic is still impacting students.

Will there be a ‘Big Bang’ in education research in 2023?
The head of the Institute of Education Sciences sees two key areas as having potential for major breakthroughs.

Breakthroughs in research in fusion energy and in education have at least one thing in common: Over the last few decades, pundits have often said big breakthroughs will soon take place.

Just as with the need to find cheap clean energy, the need to find effective ways to improve our education system is growing. This has been crystallized by the well-documented learning losses associated with COVID-19 and by the work of analysts who have translated that learning loss into estimates of lost earnings of $1.6 trillion dollars nationwide. But make no mistake, these COVID-induced learning losses are exacerbating long term trends.

Biden administration proposes to let people choose Hispanic or Latino as a race
The administration’s suggested update for race and ethnicity definitions would no longer classify people of Middle Eastern or North African descent as “white.”

The Biden administration is proposing to allow people to check off Hispanic or Latino as their race, as well as their ethnicity.

The administration has been reviewing its more than quarter-century-old definitions of race and ethnicity and is proposing to combine two questions about race and ethnicity into one on the census and in other government data collection.

Las Tienditas
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