Woods' Weekly

Woods' Weekly

Woods' Weekly is written by Superintendent Brian T. Woods and is sent to Northside ISD staff every Monday to keep them updated on local and state education issues.

May 4, 2015     

Good morning!  Last weekend was a busy one. On Saturday, we held the NEF 5K.  We had a beautiful day and a great crowd.  In the end, nearly 4,500 people were registered for the event.  Thanks to all of you who participated and brought your family and friends along with you.  What a wonderful success for our Foundation and it couldn’t have happened without you!  Thanks to our Fine Arts Department and all of our middle school choir directors for an outstanding Together We Sing event.  Almost 1,500 middle school choir students treated the capacity crowd at Paul Taylor to a series of extremely well done Beach Boys and other tunes!

Last night in Austin both our Board and Aue ES Reading Specialist Carol Anderson were honored by H-E-B along with the best educators in the state.  It was a privilege for me to be in the room as all of these outstanding people were recognized. 

A great friend of public schools in Texas recently wrote an editorial carried in the Austin paper.  The piece reads like a fairy tale and tells the story of the history of a not-so-mythical land called Tejas.  You might recognize this: “There was once a large kingdom in a fair and prosperous land called Tejas. Its rulers decreed, for the sake of future generations, to build a schoolhouse in every village and town, and to give every child, no matter their status, a good education. The rulers of the land levied a tax on houses and lands, and a tax on sundry other things, and a tax on abundant natural resources, and redistributed gold to each village and town for its school. In time the rulers also decided to help the sick and needy, to build roads for commerce and to provide for other needs of the kingdom.” 

The story continues with, “A dark time came, and the rulers said, “We don’t have enough gold,” and they told the schools to do more with less — much less. The people gathered to complain, but to no avail. At the same time, the rulers said, “Let us go to wizards for more tests to check our children’s knowledge, and take many days to do so.” Again, the people gathered to complain and a few wizards 

were dismissed, but many of the days of testing remained.  How does the fairy-tale end?  It only ends well with Texans voting their priorities.  Check out the complete story at: http://www.mystatesman.com/news/news/

Recently, researchers at Duke University conducted a study of charter school performance in North Carolina.  Their findings echo the concerns that we have raised about some of the charter schools that are expanding around San Antonio.  According to the report, "Taken together, our findings imply that the charter schools in North Carolina are increasingly serving the interests of relatively able white students in racially imbalanced schools."

The study also found that charter schools in North Carolina have improved in quality over time and now perform better than traditional public schools. However, the researchers don't believe this is due to program quality at charter schools over other public schools. They believe that it has to do with selection and types of students who move into charter schools.  Sound familiar?  You can read more on this study at: http://www.businessinsider.com/working

We have two great events coming up that you may be interested in.  Saturday, May 16, we are holding both the Solar Car races and the Construction Careers Academy Parade of Homes.  The annual Solar Car event showcases the work of almost 1,000 NISD elementary students who have designed and built a car that runs completely on solar power.  The cars will race in various heats on the track at Gus Stadium starting at 9 a.m.  The Parade of Homes will be held at Construction Careers Academy on the Warren HS campus from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Student projects showcase “tiny house” living.  You will be amazed at what our CCA students have created out of shipping containers! 

 Have a great week!