Thursday, April 30, 2015

Is Rosemont the problem, or is it DISD?

The recent news that Rosemont Elementary principal Anne Brining would not have her contract renewed for next year angered many parents at the Oak Cliff school. It also exposed feelings among many that the school is divided between haves and have-nots, with the latter made up of low-income and Latino students. DISD officials point to a series of low testing scores as the reason Brining was fired.

The situation is covered in a new column by Randolph Bush of The Dallas Morning News. You can read it by clicking here. It is an interesting read.

I personally know a number of Rosemont parents, and there is certainly some truth to the claims that Rosemont is split between affluent white students and poorer Latino students, many of them the children of immigrants who are learning English as a second language. However, as a sibling of both a former elementary principal and a teacher, I also know of the extraordinary challenges school administrators face when you have a large ESL student body. Low test scores are not always the result of poor administration, but they could be a symptom of a greater problem.

It should be the job of DISD officials to take all the factors into account when reviewing school personnel. Unfortunately, we have seen far too many nonsensical decisions come from DISD headquarters, and for all we know, this may be one of them. While it is important to understand that, despite her popularity among many Rosemont parents, Principal Brining may indeed deserve to be fired. But DISD officials owe it to those Rosemont parents, and their children, to justify that decision. A woman's career, and the educational progress of hundreds of children, hang in the balance.  

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Texas Monthly weighs in the great DFW taco debate

We just don't know how good we have it in Texas. I've been to states where both good Mexican food and Dr. Pepper are hard to find, but thankfully we have those things in abundance here. Texas Monthly recently jumped on the "Best Of" list craze by naming the best tacos in different regions of the state. They recently posted their DFW list, which was pretty evenly split between Dallas and Ft. Worth. At least four of the restaurants are in Oak Cliff, which is a nice acknowledgment for our neck of the woods. There are definitely some hidden gems to be found.

You can see the full list yourself by clicking right here.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Dallas' Trinity River Parkway Report offers new vision

The Trinity Parkway has seen its share of concepts and designs, but the latest offerings, shown in the just-released report shown below, may actually provide a vision Dallas can get behind. This offers a road and park partnership that enhances downtown Dallas, instead of a tollway that does nothing but get people out of the city. Let's just hope they don't change it yet again.