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HISD - State of Texas to Takeover School District

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I mean...HISD is horrible. 

https://abc13.com/education/hisds-takeover-by-texas-education-brass-official/5676921/

Quote

The Texas Education Agency is taking control of the state's largest school district.

In a letter sent Wednesday from the TEA to Houston ISD interim superintendent Dr. Grenita Lathan and board president Diana Davila, the state informed district leaders it would appoint a board of managers and a superintendent.

It also downgraded the district's accreditation.

This means HISD's elected school board will not have any voting power.

The move comes after years of what the state considers dysfunction and a failure to properly educate all children.

After years of bad grades, in-house bickering and revolving superintendents, the state says "enough" and takes over HISD.

Gov. Greg Abbott released the following statement about HISD:

"A quality education can make all the difference in a child's life, and our school districts have a responsibility to deliver the best possible education to every Texas child. Houston ISD has failed to meet that responsibility and students across the district have paid the price. An entire generation of students have been left behind because of the school board's policies and repeated failures. The State of Texas will never give up on our students, nor will we allow Houston ISD's school board to stand in the way of a child and their path to success. I fully support the Texas Education Agency's takeover of HISD and will work with them to give every child a chance at a great education."

HISD released the following statement:
The Houston Independent School District has received a letter from Commissioner of Education Mike Morath regarding the appointment of a board of managers. We want to assure our students, parents, staff, and community members that our primary focus will continue to be the education and success of our students.


 

https://www.dallasnews.com/opinion/editorials/2019/11/20/houston-isd-has-failed-its-students-for-too-long-and-a-state-takeover-is-what-the-law-calls-for/

https://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/outlook/article/Something-stinks-about-the-takeover-of-HISD-14836195.php

https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/education/article/HISD-teachers-union-might-join-lawsuit-to-stop-14841967.php

https://abc13.com/education/hisd-teachers-file-lawsuit-to-stop-takeover-of-school-board/5707655/

 

 

 

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1 minute ago, MissingInAction said:

As a former employee of the state I can say with authority that it wont improve anything and will probably get worse.

 

I don't disagree with the sentiment, but I guarantee you the state will focus on shit like testing rigor, attendance, etc, and not on shit like football, prom, ice cream socials. Because the state bureaucrats don't give a fuck about getting your vote during the next school board election.

 

Other times this has happened, the districts showed improvement.

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You said rigor. Giveaway.

In terms of attendance, do you think that should be a factor determining a school's rating? The concept that kids would have better attendance if schools did a better job of meeting their individual learning needs is a crock. The amount of crap layered on public schools to be parent,cook,therapist, truancy officer is outrageous.

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2 hours ago, Neonmoon said:

I mean...HISD Board is horrible along with some of its schools.

 

 

 

 

Let's be honest.  Bottom 10% of most urban school districts are terrible and have bigger problems than learning.  There are not enough Joe Clark's and Mr. Esclante's to make a difference most of the time.   Those communities rarely have the solutions to fix things but also don''t want outsiders telling them how to fix it either.  F that.  Most schools in HISD are just fine.  This needed to happen and get power out of the hands of a few of those board members.    

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AISD isn't too far behind.  As I recall, one more F rating for Burnet Middle School and the state can take over that school and/or the entire district.  Politically, this would be gravy for Abbott. I have no direct knowledge as to whether the state would do a better job running AISD, but they couldn't really do any worse.  I'm sorry to hear that Houston's schools are in even worse shape, although I'm not surprised.  Big city schools suck pretty much everywhere in America.

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5 minutes ago, Samson's Wig said:

AISD isn't too far behind.  As I recall, one more F rating for Burnet Middle School and the state can take over that school and/or the entire district.  Politically, this would be gravy for Abbott. I have no direct knowledge as to whether the state would do a better job running AISD, but they couldn't really do any worse.  I'm sorry to hear that Houston's schools are in even worse shape, although I'm not surprised.  Big city schools suck pretty much everywhere in America.

Like a lot of things of a political or governmental nature, I think the districts, and their constituencies, are too large.

But, reducing their size will tend to introduce segregation.  I think some degree of segregation, at first based on the cares vs. don't cares and rapidly devolving into haves and have nots, which will also include some racial segregation, is almost inevitable.

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2 minutes ago, TwiceHorn said:

Like a lot of things of a political or governmental nature, I think the districts, and their constituencies, are too large.

But, reducing their size will tend to introduce segregation.  I think some degree of segregation, at first based on the cares vs. don't cares and rapidly devolving into haves and have nots, which will also include some racial segregation, is almost inevitable.

Educational inequity has certainly happened in most major metro areas, without shrinking the constituencies.  I agree that shrinking them might make this worse.  I wish I knew a solution.  But I think a truly equitable system is a pipe dream when so much of a student's success is based on parental involvement.  Some parents just won't (and more often just can't due to scratching out a living) do it. 

Austin has followed the standard protocol of other cities, however.  The school board and other stakes holders make sure the public is screaming at each other about race, class, etc. instead of pointing the fingers at the administration for screwing it up in the first place (or failing to manage the district out of a mess created by past leadership).  Funding problems could be cured almost instantly by laying off 70% of administrative staff at the district level.  No one would notice a difference where it matters.  Yet, these folks somehow skate by completely unscathed while local media ensures the public is at their neighbor's throats.  The end result is AISD, like most major city districts, will continue to shrink until the only thing left is a shell of a system barely getting by while having to educate the most vulnerable students.

 

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26 minutes ago, Samson's Wig said:

AISD isn't too far behind.  As I recall, one more F rating for Burnet Middle School and the state can take over that school and/or the entire district.  Politically, this would be gravy for Abbott. I have no direct knowledge as to whether the state would do a better job running AISD, but they couldn't really do any worse.  I'm sorry to hear that Houston's schools are in even worse shape, although I'm not surprised.  Big city schools suck pretty much everywhere in America.

Alief don't play no school, either. 

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10 minutes ago, BigHorn'13 said:

Alief don't play no school, either. 

Is Alief a separate school district from HISD?  It kind of straddles the city/suburbs, right?

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That map is out of date.  North Forest was absorbed by HISD in 2013

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4 hours ago, NeverMarryAStripper said:

I blame it all on those giant homecoming mums

 

14522725_1107530269300189_6836944389947224380_n_w0vcjr.jpg

The fuck is that on the far right?

Edited by Underdog

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I’ve never met a person who wanted to send their kids to HISD. It’s either private or move to the suburbs. Tons of people in Austin send their kids to AISD. In fact, it’s the norm In Austin 

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2 minutes ago, Neonmoon said:

I’ve never met a person who wanted to send their kids to HISD. It’s either private or move to the suburbs. Tons of people in Austin send their kids to AISD. In fact, it’s the norm In Austin 

It's the norm in part of Austin.  The East side has seen a major decline in enrollment over the last ten years, due in part to gentrification, in larger part due to charter schools, and all because of the failed operation of the school district.  Other pockets of AISD are overcrowded, as they are seen as the "good" public schools.  Those neighborhoods have already priced out most middle class folks, and many who are left can (and will) send their kids to private school if they deem the public schools are falling apart.  Those who can't afford private school will follow the time honored tradition of moving to the suburbs.  If bussing actually happens, which was brought up again this year as a solution to the district's woes, you will see enrollment numbers on the west side of town plummet just like the east side.  It's a house of cards at this point, and the breeze is picking up.  It's nothing unique, and just following the same pattern other large cities went through as they grew.  If there were an obvious solution, I think some city would have implemented it by now.

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26 minutes ago, Neonmoon said:

I’ve never met a person who wanted to send their kids to HISD. It’s either private or move to the suburbs. Tons of people in Austin send their kids to AISD. In fact, it’s the norm In Austin 

I send my kids to HISD. There, you just met one.

Been trying to follow this story for obvious reasons. HISD has said basically nothing to parents so far, just a short email that was like "we got a letter from the state" without really even explaining wtf that meant. To be fair to them, there isn't really much to say right now. The state is going to appoint a new board (and probably superintendent), it hasn't happened yet, and no one knows who will make up said board.

In the past, when this has happened, sometimes the districts have improved and sometimes they haven't. Notwithstanding some infighting and general fuckery amongst the (now outgoing) board, I actually think that HISD does a decent job, given that it's like 80% economically disadvantaged. In a district this big, and with this many challenges, it's not like a new board is going to wave a magic wand and make everything better overnight. The process does tend to get district finances in order, which has been an issue for HISD, so there's that.

I have my doubts that the state can resist playing political games in this situation, or that that this is truly about "the kids", but that's veering too close to Cloak Room territory so I'll leave it at that. Basically nothing has happened yet and no one knows shit so there's not much to talk about. My best guess is that not a lot will change at the end of the day, other than some cleaning up of the finances.

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7 hours ago, High Plains Drifter said:

 

I don't disagree with the sentiment, but I guarantee you the state will focus on shit like testing rigor, attendance, etc, and not on shit like football, prom, ice cream socials. Because the state bureaucrats don't give a fuck about getting your vote during the next school board election.

 

Other times this has happened, the districts showed improvement.

HISD is focused on football?

 

LOlz.

 

Heard an ad on 790AM yesterday about this whole deal, it was from the teachers federation( or whatever the name) in support of HISD maintaining its own leadership.  Found the premise that an ad was needed to be very peculiar.

Edited by Iceman

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Quote

laying off 70% of administrative staff at the district level.

Absolutely this. As a teacher (and parent), I've got a lot to say on the subject. Y'all would probably not believe the amount of added "fluff" teachers have to institute because someone above us has to justify their position(s).  Within just the past 2 weeks, we've been told to put two new things into place in the classroom.  I've been meaning to make a list of the multitude of crap we have to do to show y'all the absurdity of it all. 

I have no idea how to fix the parental involvement aspect.  I will say that - of the 17 parent/teacher conferences I had scheduled last month - 12 of them no-showed.  No call; no e-mail.  Four of the 9 or so parents that showed up were those of the two Vietnamese students that I have.  None of the four spoke a word of English, but considered the event important enough to show up and try.  (We did use GoogleTranslate to converse.)  

 

Edited by Knoxtnhorn

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HISD: Things can't get any worse.

State of Texas: Hold my beer.

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57 minutes ago, Neonmoon said:

I’ve never met a person who wanted to send their kids to HISD. It’s either private or move to the suburbs. Tons of people in Austin send their kids to AISD. In fact, it’s the norm In Austin 

WTF?  This is just not true.  I took my kids out of private to go to HISD after previously throwing up my hands at DISD and Richardson ISD. 

HSPVA is great school.

DeBakey is a great school

Carnegie is a great school.

Lamar and Bellaire are great schools if you stay in IB/AP.

I'd put all of those up against almost any private school in the area.

 

My kids are too old so I don't know much about the lower levels, but I do know these:

Lanier is a great school.

TH Rogers is a great school.

Kolter is a great school.

Poe is a great school.

West U is a great school

River Oaks is a great school.

 

 

And no suburbs no matter what.

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24 minutes ago, tokamak said:

I send my kids to HISD. There, you just met one.

Been trying to follow this story for obvious reasons. HISD has said basically nothing to parents so far, just a short email that was like "we got a letter from the state" without really even explaining wtf that meant. To be fair to them, there isn't really much to say right now. The state is going to appoint a new board (and probably superintendent), it hasn't happened yet, and no one knows who will make up said board.

In the past, when this has happened, sometimes the districts have improved and sometimes they haven't. Notwithstanding some infighting and general fuckery amongst the (now outgoing) board, I actually think that HISD does a decent job, given that it's like 80% economically disadvantaged. In a district this big, and with this many challenges, it's not like a new board is going to wave a magic wand and make everything better overnight. The process does tend to get district finances in order, which has been an issue for HISD, so there's that.

I have my doubts that the state can resist playing political games in this situation, or that that this is truly about "the kids", but that's veering too close to Cloak Room territory so I'll leave it at that. Basically nothing has happened yet and no one knows shit so there's not much to talk about. My best guess is that not a lot will change at the end of the day, other than some cleaning up of the finances.

This is just politics - the HISD board skews blue, the state red.  Now the red folks can put some folks they owe favors into some resume-building positions they couldn't get otherwise.

That's it.

Edited by Liquor and Poker

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They did this to Wilmer-Hutchins like a decade ago and I think ended up saying fuck it and giving them to disd. 
 

not really an option with the 3rd largest district in the country. 

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46 minutes ago, Hank Scorpio said:

Just wait until the state renames all of the HISD schools after Confederate generals. 

Trump Jr University!

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2 hours ago, Liquor and Poker said:

WTF?  This is just not true.  I took my kids out of private to go to HISD after previously throwing up my hands at DISD and Richardson ISD. 

No idea on DISD or HISD, but can’t disagree with you more about Richardson.  Lots of people moved into that area specifically for the schools.

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7 minutes ago, TKthunder2 said:

No idea on DISD or HISD, but can’t disagree with you more about Richardson.  Lots of people moved into that area specifically for the schools.

Did they move to go to Bukhair Elementary in RISD? Academic rating of 1/10 , did not meet TEA standards. Needs Improvement. Not trying to pick a fight because it's an household income issue. HISD,AISD,CY-FAIR all have underperforming schools because of the parent(s) at home and how they prepped their kid to be successful. HISD'S Lamar, Bellaire, HSPVA have some ultra sharp kids gracing their doors from West U, Southside Place and Bellaire. Homes with resources. Schools that hire good teachers who want to work with achieving kids without excessive discipline problems. School boards, I guess, gotta blame somebody, but they're elected by area and like all politicians are protecting their own. Does the million $ pool at Kashmere still have water in it? 

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19 minutes ago, Nolacycling said:

Did they move to go to Bukhair Elementary in RISD? Academic rating of 1/10 , did not meet TEA standards. Needs Improvement. Not trying to pick a fight because it's an household income issue. HISD,AISD,CY-FAIR all have underperforming schools because of the parent(s) at home and how they prepped their kid to be successful. HISD'S Lamar, Bellaire, HSPVA have some ultra sharp kids gracing their doors from West U, Southside Place and Bellaire. Homes with resources. Schools that hire good teachers who want to work with achieving kids without excessive discipline problems. School boards, I guess, gotta blame somebody, but they're elected by area and like all politicians are protecting their own. Does the million $ pool at Kashmere still have water in it? 

You’re picking the worst school in a economically disadvantaged area and condemning an entire district.  Yes, I’ll readily admit that people aren’t moving from DISD schools to send their kids to Bukhair but you can find that example in almost any district including HISD/DISD and many others.  Richardson HS, Berkner, Pearce and Lake Highlands are all top schools in the area and have been recognized as such.

Also let’s not act like Richardson isn’t trying to improve its lowest performing school either.  https://www.dallasnews.com/news/education/2018/08/21/school-uniforms-new-staff-no-phones-richardson-isd-overhauls-struggling-far-north-dallas-elementary-school/

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Just wait until the state renames all of the HISD schools after Confederate generals. 
I looked up old Robert E Lee High and see that they renamed it after a teacher ("wisdom" ironically), but kept the "general" mascot and "Saber" yearbook name. Ha!

I am guessing it is still a big feeder for the TDC.

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9 minutes ago, TKthunder2 said:

You’re picking the worst school in a economically disadvantaged area and condemning an entire district.  Yes, I’ll readily admit that people aren’t moving from DISD schools to send their kids to Bukhair but you can find that example in almost any district including HISD/DISD and many others.  Richardson HS, Berkner, Pearce and Lake Highlands are all top schools in the area and have been recognized as such.

Also let’s not act like Richardson isn’t trying to improve its lowest performing school either.  https://www.dallasnews.com/news/education/2018/08/21/school-uniforms-new-staff-no-phones-richardson-isd-overhauls-struggling-far-north-dallas-elementary-school/

That was my point. I'm not meaning to condemn Richardson,  it is the polar opposite of HISD which is mostly shit w/a few Berkners. I'm glad and it's a good thing they're trying to help kids out. I work in title 1 schools, it's important.

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10 hours ago, Huckleberry said:

You think the problem with HISD is too much football, prom, and ice cream socials?

 

I think one problem with HISD is probably the same problem as with most public schools- the focus seems to be on everything but academics.

Just one example: I get daily remind notices from my daughter's school. Maybe 1 in 5, if that, involve academics. The other 4 out of 5 involve sports, field trips to pumpkin patches for halloween, info about whatever dance is coming up, what the daily theme for spirit week is (pajama day, dress like a super hero day).

Another: I walk down the hallways at her school, 75+% of the crap on the walls is not directly related to academics.

Another: Weekly pep rallies for football games where the athletes are idolized. No pep rallies for the nerds in AP classes.

How do the science dept budget and sports budget compare at HISD? After the principal, who is the second highest paid employee at a typical Texas high school? Hint: its not the math dept head.

This all comes directly from the management and administration. Replacing the school board and administration is probably the quickest route to changing a school's culture.

 

 

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4 hours ago, Liquor and Poker said:

WTF?  This is just not true.  I took my kids out of private to go to HISD after previously throwing up my hands at DISD and Richardson ISD. 

HSPVA is great school.

DeBakey is a great school

Carnegie is a great school.

Lamar and Bellaire are great schools if you stay in IB/AP.

I'd put all of those up against almost any private school in the area.

 

My kids are too old so I don't know much about the lower levels, but I do know these:

Lanier is a great school.

TH Rogers is a great school.

Kolter is a great school.

Poe is a great school.

West U is a great school

River Oaks is a great school.

 

 

And no suburbs no matter what.

You took your kids out of private because you were convinced HISD was superior?   And you follow that up by pointing out the great urban schools of Bellaire,  west u and river oaks?

Point made Dr. Lathan.

 

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6 hours ago, Neonmoon said:

I’ve never met a person who wanted to send their kids to HISD. It’s either private or move to the suburbs. Tons of people in Austin send their kids to AISD. In fact, it’s the norm In Austin 

You must not know many people. 

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4 hours ago, Liquor and Poker said:

This is just politics - the HISD board skews blue, the state red.  Now the red folks can put some folks they owe favors into some resume-building positions they couldn't get otherwise.

That's it.

What's the prevailing view of Mike Morath politically? I grew up with him and was fairly close to him when we were young so my view towards him is a bit biased.

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10 minutes ago, Catdaddyhorn said:

What's the prevailing view of Mike Morath politically? I grew up with him and was fairly close to him when we were young so my view towards him is a bit biased.

I met him once and was far from impressed. My nature is generally to get along with everybody and I don’t know how anybody could work with the guy. It was on more person/local level, not how he is running the state. The HISD vs Texas pissing match is just arrogant people in a weird political struggle that doesn’t really matter in the end. The states ultimate goal in these situations m is to return the district to voter control and rather quickly.  

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A lot of West U parents are bailing.   This deal plus that school is falling apart.  Our private school is getting a shit ton more applications from West U to than normal   

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3 minutes ago, NeverMarryAStripper said:

You know, the one “those people” go to

 

West U elementary.  It’s a dump right now.  

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How many schools in HISD are failing?  Why not just hand over management of the failing ones to the state who claims they know  how to turn them around.
Then HISD can continue with what’s working for the better schools. Obviously hisd has to provide funding but I’m sure they’re ok with letting the state of Texas take over the bad schools.  Win win for everyone. 

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My dad went to pre-integration Lamar back when West U kids like him were "the apartment kids" compared to the River Oaks set. That divide still shows up at reunions, 50-plus years later, so he no longer attends them...My daughter is there now and likes the school overall but says the new building was designed by idiots. It is semi-open plan, and she says she is distracted by the goings-on in three or four other classes while trying to focus on what's happening in hers. So, she said, she wants to transfer to Bellaire. I kinda think this was a ploy that had more to do with her social life than academics, though, and she has shut down her campaign to transfer now and seems happy enough. (She lives with her mom and is zone for Westbury. Which is not an option and is a prime example of a lot of things this thread is about: a failing and terrifying school with a formerly Confederate mascot.)

I broke the string of people in my family to graduate from HISD. I went to Strake in the Oil Bust 1980s, back when, like Rice, it was a bargain. Also like Rice, Strake is no longer a bargain, so my son went to Bellaire. Frankly, that was also because my son was a disinterested student and a raging agnostic who would have argued with the priests over every last little thing, and I am a Surly Poor, but my well-to-do, devout Catholic father-in-law was telling me that if his high-achieving Strake grad son was my son's age, he would have thought long and hard about sending his son to HISD and saving that money for his college. 

And no, he wasn't telling me that to make me feel better. Strake really is that expensive now, and if your kid is driven, they can do just as well at Lamar or Bellaire as they could at any private aside from maybe St. John's.)  

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17 hours ago, Knoxtnhorn said:

Absolutely this. As a teacher (and parent), I've got a lot to say on the subject. Y'all would probably not believe the amount of added "fluff" teachers have to institute because someone above us has to justify their position(s).  Within just the past 2 weeks, we've been told to put two new things into place in the classroom.  I've been meaning to make a list of the multitude of crap we have to do to show y'all the absurdity of it all. 

I have no idea how to fix the parental involvement aspect.  I will say that - of the 17 parent/teacher conferences I had scheduled last month - 12 of them no-showed.  No call; no e-mail.  Four of the 9 or so parents that showed up were those of the two Vietnamese students that I have.  None of the four spoke a word of English, but considered the event important enough to show up and try.  (We did use GoogleTranslate to converse.)  

 

this is kind of funny and really sad at the same time

what two kids do you think will probably grow up to have a much higher level of success than most....I am surprised the parents did not bring someone with them to translate, but perhaps with the emphasis they place on education relative to social status <--- perhaps not the right term, they did not want anyone else there in case their kids were making a B or something really embarrassing like that....kind of surprised the kids were not there to translate either

HISD has always been a good place to prepare kids for "life" provided you went to the right school.......you could show up one day a week on test day and maybe another day of the week to turn in some homework and if you passed the test and behaved that day and the homework was good then you were golden to run wild the rest of the time.......of course that was back when most parents gave a shit and discipline was handled at home after some swats at school lite your ass up into next week

now at shittier schools I think it prepared you for TDC or life running wild on the streets until you were dead

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15 minutes ago, Nice Guy Eddie said:

How many schools in HISD are failing?  Why not just hand over management of the failing ones to the state who claims they know  how to turn them around.
Then HISD can continue with what’s working for the better schools. Obviously hisd has to provide funding but I’m sure they’re ok with letting the state of Texas take over the bad schools.  Win win for everyone. 

Apparently, if any one school receives a failing grade for more than four or five (reports vary) consecutive years, the district is subject to board replacement/takeover by the TEA.  In this case, it is Wheatley.

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