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Texas News
Midland ISD board praises Ramsey during review process
The Midland ISD board said Midland ISD has the leader that board members have been looking for after coming back into open session from the review of Superintendent Angelica Ramsey on Monday night.

Board President Bryan Murry said that Ramsey met all the goals that are part of the Lone Star Governance program and that the board “is extremely excited to where we are headed.”

The board not only claimed it was a “great year of growth,” but raised Ramsey’s salary from $275,000 to $310,000, which Murry said puts her above average in her peer group around the state.

Billions still untapped by Texas schools to help students recover from COVID slide
Deadlines approaching to spend federal aid on tutoring, teachers and more.

Schools have a once-in-a-generation infusion of massive funding to tackle a pandemic problem: millions of students struggling in school since COVID-19 disrupted education. So far, Texas schools have tapped less than a third of the cash with only two years left to spend it all.

Supply chain delays, staffing shortages and trouble hiring have tripped up plans. That means school leaders may need to rush to use all funds before deadlines.

Read-in protest held in rotunda of Texas Capitol in opposition to book-banning policies
A few dozen people gathered in the rotunda of the Texas State Capitol to speak out against the banning of certain books in Texas schools.

A coalition protesting book censorship in Texas public schools held a “read-in” in the Capitol rotunda on Tuesday morning.

The “Teach the Truth Coalition” held the protest during the House Public Education Committee’s hearing which, in part, focused on “monitoring and analyzing the state policy on curriculum and instructional materials used in public schools.” 

Will Texas have enough teachers when school starts again?
After 18 years of teaching Spanish, logging lesson plans and living the daily shuffle of students moving room to room between periods, the habits of school life are over for Patryce Zarraga.

“Actually, at the beginning of the year, I had wanted to stay a couple of more years to 65, or 66 so I could be getting my Medicare and Social Security and stuff like that. I couldn’t do it,” Zarraga said.

She said when she and her students returned to in-person class after the pandemic-forced virtual school, things unexpectedly changed.

Healing Uvalde: South Texas artist completes Eva Mireles mural in Uvalde
Sandra Gonzalez has painted murals on several Corpus Christi buildings. Her most recent work is honoring Uvalde teacher Eva Mireles with a vibrant mural.

21 murals are being painted in Uvalde to honor the 21 victims of the Robb Elementary shooting and Corpus Christi residents may recognize the style of some of the work.  

Sandra Gonzalez, a former West Oso ISD employee and longtime artist who now lives in San Antonio, is responsible for some of the colorful artwork on buildings around Corpus Christi and was asked to paint the mural in Uvalde honoring teacher Eva Mireles. 

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National News
74 Interview: Seeing the Nuances Behind the Chronic Absenteeism Crisis
Students are missing class at unprecedented levels. Researcher Jing Liu shares tips for how schools can identify at-risk youth early & intervene

Students who miss at least 10% of school days are more likely to face reading difficulties by third grade, less likely to earn a high school diploma and are at higher risk of juvenile delinquency. There’s a word to describe when students surpass this troubling threshold: chronic absenteeism.

It makes intuitive sense. Students who spend less time in the classroom have a harder time keeping up with their peers and may face difficulties developing positive relationships with school staff.

More police in schools are not the answer. It’s up to educators to make schools safe
Instead of cops, schools need more support for the social, emotional and mental health needs of students

It may be summer break for students, but many educational leaders are once again spending their days thinking of ways to keep children safe in the coming school year. Rather than spending their time considering the relative merits of reading lists or science curricula, educators find themselves grappling with questions they have not been trained to handle.

This comes after 19 children and two teachers were killed in their school in Uvalde, Texas. Unfortunately, between the dozens of solicitations from for-profit security vendors and the decisions of elected officials, educational leaders are under pressure to “harden” schools. They must resist.

What can pre-K programs do to rebound from enrollment dips?
Efforts to increase pre-K enrollments and quality programming will require parent-school-government collaborations, data collection and review, and smart spending decisions, said panelists at a virtual session of the U.S. Office of Special Education Programs’ Leadership and Project Directors’ Conference on Wednesday.

Education leaders in Connecticut, for example, are working with local partners to smooth transitions for children and families between special education’s infant and toddler program and pre-K and K-12 systems, said Bryan Klimkiewicz, special education director at the Connecticut State Department of Education.

Want to Support English-Learners? Prioritize SEL, New Study Finds
When students test out of an English-learner program, or are reclassified as proficient in English, they report a higher sense of self and a greater belief in their ability to complete challenging academic tasks, a new study finds.

Past research has examined how exiting students out of English-learner programs—and removing the label of English-learner—impacts students’ academic outcomes. Monica Lee, a senior research associate at the Annenberg Institute at Brown University, and her co-author James Soland of the University of Virginia, wanted to look at what reclassification means for social-emotional learning, or SEL, outcomes.

New Quarter Will Honor Latina Activist Who Fought For Women’s Voting Rights
Adelina “Nina” Otero-Warren, a leader in New Mexico’s suffrage movement, will grace the U.S. quarter later this summer.

A Latina leader in New Mexico’s suffrage movement and one of the state’s first female government officials during the 20th century will be stamped on a U.S. quarter in her honor later this summer.

Adelina “Nina” Otero-Warren – who became the first Latina ever to run for U.S. Congress — provided leadership in New Mexico’s movement for women’s right to vote and played a trailblazing role in politics.

Las Tienditas
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Walsh Gallegos Treviño Kyle & Robinson P.C. provides legal services to Texas school districts and related entities. With offices throughout Texas and also in Albuquerque, New Mexico, we have served districts across both states with prompt, efficient and reliable representation since 1983. Our attorneys serve as fierce advocates in the areas of employment, special education, constitutional law, civil rights, construction and business. We are innovators in client service and pride ourselves on practical, straightforward counsel. With Walsh Gallegos, you can be confident that your attorneys have the motivation and experience to protect and promote the best interests of your district.

Rebecca Stribling – 210.979.6633