Your weekly look at Fort Worth schools
Happy Tuesday from the Fort Worth Report. It’s time for the School Report! This is your weekly newsletter of education news you can use. We will be in your inbox every Tuesday morning. From enrollment numbers in Fort Worth ISD to books for Hispanic Heritage Month, here’s what you need to know this week about your schools.
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One in five students have left Fort Worth ISD in the past six years. Jacob conducted a 10-year analysis of the district’s enrollment trends. Here’s how this impacts you.
- District leaders may be forced to close schools because of tough financial times, school finance leaders told Jacob.
- The district faces a $40 million deficit, significantly fewer dollars from the state and the district starting to send excess property tax revenue to the state.
- Administrators are using federal stimulus dollars to bridge the gaps in the budget.
- Half of the district’s 140 campuses dropped in enrollment between 2011 and 2021. Nearly 40 schools saw a decline greater than 25%.
Experts say you should closely monitor your children on the internet. Alliance for Children has some questions you should ask yourself:
- Do you know what apps and games your children use on their phones, tablets, gaming systems and computers? Apps and games providing less social interaction are less likely to allow opportunities for child exploitation.
- Do you know who your children are chatting with online? Online perpetrators chatting with your children may portray themselves as kids and can spend years grooming and manipulating your child. Make your children aware of how dangerous it is to give out personal information about themselves, including their home address and even phone number.
- Do you know what kind of pictures your children are taking of themselves and where those are going? Pictures, videos and social media posts can exist forever on the internet.
- Are your children sexting with other juveniles they know in real life? This can lead to humiliation and bullying by others if shared. Schools can discipline students involved, even the ones that originally sent the content. Police even have the authority to seize the phone due to child pornography.
- Are you communicating with your children about healthy relationships and who is age appropriate? Make it clear to your children that flirtatious attention from adults is inappropriate.
Fort Worth ISD has 127 classrooms that exceed the maximum number of students the state allows. As Jacob explained, the school board approved a waiver to exceed the limit.
- What’s the limit? Texas requires pre-kindergarten through fourth-grade classrooms to have no more than 22 students. Go beyond that, and the state requires districts to submit a waiver.
- Where are the classes? Most of them are in east and southeast Fort Worth ISD.
- Trustees expect administrators to find real solutions to fix this issue and not simply move on because of the waiver.
- Administrators pinned the over capacity classes on a lack of teachers. Last week, the district’s job board had more than 62 teaching vacancies.
On Sept. 23, Grapevine-Colleyville ISD Superintendent Robin Ryan announced his retirement after 38 years of working in Texas public schools.
- Ryan worked in Grapevine-Colleyville ISD as superintendent for 13 years.
- His last day as superintendent is set to be Jan. 1, 2023. Ryan will remain an employee of the district through Aug. 31 to assist in the transition of leadership.
It’s about halfway through Hispanic Heritage Month, want some book recommendations to teach kids about la cultura?
- Bookshop.org, a website that gives a percentage of proceeds to local bookstores, compiled a list of children’s books for Hispanic Heritage Month.
- Many of the books listed are available in both Spanish and English.
- For your older readers, here’s a list of books that highlight Hispanic voices. Personally, Kristen recommends “I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter” and “Fat Chance, Charlie Vega” for your high schoolers.
Off campus: Dates to know
Here’s what’s coming up in Fort Worth and Tarrant County:
- Oct. 7 and 10: Fall break. No school in Fort Worth ISD.
- Oct. 10: Student and staff holiday in Eagle Mountain Saginaw ISD.
- Oct. 11: Student holiday in Eagle Mountain Saginaw ISD, staff development day.
- Oct. 13-17: Student holiday in Keller ISD.
- Oct. 17: Carroll ISD school board meeting.
- Oct. 15: Saturday school in Fort Worth ISD.
- Oct. 24: Keller ISD school board meeting.
- Oct. 25: Fort Worth ISD, HEB ISD school board meetings.
- Oct. 29: Saturday school in Fort Worth ISD.
- Nov. 8: Fort Worth ISD school board meeting.
- Nov 12: Saturday school in Fort Worth ISD.
Always check your specific school for the official calendar in case of late scheduling changes.