Posts written by Bill Zeeble

Dallas County Schools' Police Officer Todd Teetz, in front of a screen capable of tracking hundreds of buses simultaneously in real time

Dallas County Schools Unveils ‘Bus Of The Future’


The school bus of the future is here now for kids in Dallas County Schools. At first peek, you may notice nothing new. But there are security cameras inside and out, a GPS tracker and alerts, seatbelts, even a thumb print ID scanner

 

Dallas County School's bus of the future, with 7 exterior cameras, 3 inside, a thumb print scanner, seat belts, GPS tracker VOIP system, more

Bill Zeeble, KERA News

Dallas County School’s bus of the future, with 7 exterior cameras, 3 inside, a thumb print scanner, seat belts, GPS tracker VOIP system, more

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School Guide And Ratings For Dallas & Fort Worth Now Out From Non-Profit


The children’s advocacy organization, Children At Risk, just released its Texas School Guide: A Parent’s Roadmap to Success, looking at both Dallas and Fort Worth ISD.

The Guide contains more than essential basics like test score data, class size, and graduation rates. It includes magnet school details, application procedures and requirements, and charter school options.

The Guide also let’s you know about a school’s  programs scheduled before and after normal hours, which may include sports/athletic programs and available art and music classes.

Workshops for parents on how to use this guide will be scheduled beginning later this month. The guide will exist not only online, but in print, for distribution in Dallas and Fort Worth over the next several weeks. 

Former DISD Chief Of Staff Sentenced To Prison


Jerome Oberlton served five months as Dallas Superintendent Mike Miles’ Chief of Staff before resigning once he told Miles he was under federal investigation from his time in Atlanta, where he had worked for the school system.  The Dallas Morning News passed on information that he pleaded guilty to taking $60,000 in kickpacks, according to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, and was sentenced to 3 years, 5 months.

Jerome Oberlton, former DISD chief of staff, pleads guilty, will serve 42 months in prisonFormer Dallas ISD chief of staff Jerome Oberlton pleaded guilty Wednesday in a federal court in Georgia to taking $60,000 in kickbacks while overseeing technology in Atlanta Public School. As part of the plea deal, Oberlton will serve three and a half years in prison and repay $735,000 to the …

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High School Juniors: NASA Wants YOU


NASA (the National Aeronautics and Space Administration) is taking applications from Texas juniors for its scholarship program known as HAS – The Texas High School Aerospace Scholars. It will offer a summer program at Houston’s Johnson Space Center and other online chat and information groups.

NASA wants students interested in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math careers.

Check out the NASA site (with a link to the application page) here.

kids computers


Technical Hiccups Hinder Online College Applicants


The Common Application program is supposed to help high schoolers apply to multiple colleges via the web. But owing to software snafus, some students haven’t been able to apply to schools or correctly send text or process credit card charges, among other problems. That’s according to The New York Times.

It’s a problem that arose at this week’s school board meeting in Plano, where the Dallas Morning News blog reported the district’s high number of advanced-placement test takers makes the district the “envy of the nation,” at least according to a Plano ISD representative.

Plano school officials say they’re helping students overcome the problems.

 

More Dallas Students Took SAT Tests But Few Hit The Benchmark


Fewer than 20% of all Dallas seniors in 2013 met the critical reading benchmark, according to the SAT scores just out. That means more than 80% missed it.

29% met the benchmark in math, and only 16.1% met it in writing.

Among African Americans who took the 2013 test, only 13% hit the reading benchmark. In math, nearly 19% scored the benchmark, and fewer than 10% hit the benchmark in writing.

Fewer than 20% of Hispanic seniors in 2013 hit the benchmarks in reading and writing, while slightly more, nearly 30% hit it in math.

Among White students, more than 60% of 2013 seniors hit the benchmarks in reading math, and writing.

More DISD kids in total took the SAT in 2013 than they did two years ago.

Looking at ethnic breakdowns, more Hispanics took the test, 509, than took it two years ago.

However, 76 fewer DISD African American students, and 14 fewer White students took the test in 2013 than took it in 2011.

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