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Texas News
U.S. Department of Education investigates claims of racial and gender discrimination at North Texas school district
The inquiry comes after several high-profile controversies at Carroll ISD, including an administrator’s call for teachers to provide an “opposing” view of the Holocaust.

The U.S. Department of Education has opened three investigations into allegations of racial and gender discrimination at Carroll Independent School District in Southlake, a school district spokesperson confirmed Wednesday.

Texas ranks among worst in the nation for racial health disparities
Racial and ethnic disparities in medical treatment are among the worst in the nation in Texas, where Black and Latino populations are less likely to receive preventative care and more likely to have treatment delayed, according to a new study.

Texas ranked in the bottom quarter of the states when it comes to both access to and quality of care for Blacks and Latinos, hinting at deep-seated racial and ethnic health inequities, according to the Commonwealth Fund, a health policy foundation in New York. Blacks and Latinos are also more likely to have worse outcomes from treatment than whites, according to the study.

Texas School Resource Officers Pepper Spray, Tase Students During HS Protest, Prompting Police Brutality Outcry
Aschool district in suburban Dallas will investigate a sexual harassment allegation and police officers’ use of force after a student protest turned chaotic Friday, resulting in the arrest of four students and accusations of police brutality.

Viral videos of the incident show disturbing interactions between police and students, one of whom appeared to be a Black male teen who was pepper-sprayed, tasered and dragged by the shirt as he lay unresponsive on the ground. Some students coughed and fled the scene as the pepper spray filled a school hallway. Another video appeared to show an officer pulling a girl across the hallway by her hair.

Texas Democrats rely on voters of color to be competitive. So why are their top statewide candidates mostly white?
The GOP slate for statewide office includes two high-profile Latinos and two Black candidates who have previously held state or federal office. Republicans are making a play to be more competitive with voters of color as the state’s electorate grows more diverse.

For decades, Texas Democrats have banked on the growth of voters of color, particularly Black and Latino voters, as the key to their eventual success in a state long dominated by Republicans.

K-12 Dive Superintendent of the Year: Michael Hinojosa, Dallas Independent School District
Steadfast and laser-focused determination to do what’s best for students helped the Texas leader navigate public disputes amid an ongoing pandemic.

When disputes over mask mandates in Texas, Florida and other states garnered national headlines earlier this year, Dallas Independent School District Superintendent Michael Hinojosa’s determination to stand his ground on what he believed to be the best decision for students and staff made him a de facto face of district leaders butting heads with state officials.

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National News
‘We Are Here’: Debates Over Teaching History Exclude Native People, Rhode Island Indigenous Parents Say
Growing up in Charlestown, Rhode Island, Chrystal Baker remembers reading a textbook in history class that said the Narragansett Indigenous people, who have lived in southern New England for tens of thousands of years, were extinct.

“We’re not extinct,” the young student ventured, nervous about contradicting the lesson, but feeling she had to speak up. “I’m a Narragansett.”

No response came from her teacher or classmates, recalls the Chariho Regional School District alum, who graduated in 1986.

‘The Reading Year’: First grade is critical for reading skills, but kids coming from disrupted kindergarten experiences are way behind
After 18 months of untraditional learning, students are showing up at school lacking fine motor, academic and social skills

Most years, by the third week of first grade, Heather Miller is working with her class on writing the beginning, middle and end of simple words. This year, she had to backtrack — all the way to the letter “H.”

“Do we start at the bottom or do we start at the top?” Miller asked as she stood in front of her class at Doss Elementary.

Survey: 48% of teachers considering job change
Teacher burnout has been well-documented over the course of the pandemic.

Just last month, a MissionSquare Research Institute survey of 1,203 state and local government employees conducted in May reported teachers were more likely than other government employees to express dissatisfaction with their jobs. In that survey, school employees reported higher levels of anxiety (34%), stress (52%) and burnout (52%) during the COVID-19 pandemic than other government employees. By comparison, 29% of other government workers reported feeling anxious, 35% being stressed, and 34% feeling burnt out.

From ‘Picture Walks’ to Book Q&As, Here’s How One Rural California School Topped State’s List for Being Best in Reading
During Kelsi Iturralde’s 45-minute guided reading session on a recent Monday, six students at a time sit with her at a kidney table while the rest of the class “whisper reads” at their desks.

“I tell them not to read at the same pace that your neighbors are reading, not too loud that we’re distracting someone, but just enough that you can practice your reading voice,” the second grade teacher at Lincoln Elementary School says.

‘Encanto’: The music, joy and superpower of a multigenerational Latino family
Lin-Manuel Miranda, Stephanie Beatriz and Diane Guerrero say the animated Disney film captured the sounds of Colombia and the loving cacophony of extended family.

In an age of big-screen superhero families like those of Marvel’s “Fantastic Four,” Pixar’s “The Incredibles” and DC’s “Shazam!” Disney wants to flip the script on viewers and put the spotlight on an ordinary 15-year-old Colombian girl, Mirabel, who struggles to keep her extended superhero family together as they lose their powers.

Las Tienditas
This Week’s Featured Sponsor
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Founded in 1998 and based in Dallas, Texas, Istation (Imagination Station) has become one of the nation’s leading providers of richly animated, game-like educational technology. Winner of several national educational technology awards, the Istation program puts more instructional time in the classroom through small-group and collaborative instruction. Istation’s innovative reading, math and Spanish programs immerse students in an engaging and interactive environment and inspire them to learn. Additionally, administrators and educators can use Istation to easily track the progress of their students, schools and classrooms. Istation now serves over 4 million students throughout the United States and in several other countries.