Saturday, May 30, 2015

Dallas ISD Title VI Complaint & STAAR Test disaster

Since the original Title VI complaint against Dallas ISD was filed on 3-25-15 much more research into the massive data online in the PEIMS Financial Database on the Texas Education Agency web site has been done.   On 4-21-15 a greatly expanded complaint was filed to replace the 3-25-15 complaint.  This one was signed by 15 Dallas residents most of whom were parents to DISD students.

Channel 8 report gave an extensive report on this complaint on 5-28-14. (An even more expanded evening news coverage of this issue happened the first week of June and Mike Miles resigned 20 days later on 6-23-15.)  The link to that article and 5 minute news report is  However, the 70 page copy posted with that report was edited into a 76 page copy to be made much more clear and easy to read.  It is the 76 page copy that is being used by the Department of Education in the complaint.  Email  for a copy.

DISD has admitted "coding errors" and is now in the process of returning probably over $50 million dollars to campuses serving the most impoverished children in DISD.   Rumors are floating of many dozens of DISD central office staff losing their positions as these "coding errors" are corrected.

These admissions by DISD mean that the crowded classrooms and lack of resources on many DISD campuses were due to central office "coding errors."  Probably more resignations are coming.

This week DISD was also notified of abominable results from the statewide STAAR test wherein DISD students fell more behind other students in Texas than at any time since 2004, possible even before 2000, except for possibly last year when similar falling results happened.   These past two years are the worst years for achievement in DISD in over 12 years!

It is certain that the "coding errors" claimed by Mike Miles and his staff were a major factor in crowded classrooms, fewer teachers, and the lowering of DISD achievement relative to the state of Texas since 2012.

The exposures that have been set in motion by the 4-21-15 Title VI Complaint have just started.  Nobody knows what the final outcomes will be beyond more resources and teachers being made available to the most poverty stricken schools in DISD.

Sadly, due to the history of retaliation under Mike Miles in DISD, it is feared that these job losses downtown and in management positions will be used as opportunities to eliminate those who have hesitated in any way to sing the praises of reforms under Mr. Miles.

ADDENDUM: Mike Miles resigned on 6-23-15 to be effective 6-30-15.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

2015 STAAR Test Results Dallas ISD, a first look

The Dallas Morning News posted the Dallas ISD STAAR test results from the most recent testing for 2015.  See it at

(Now, 5-27-15, the statewide results have been received.  For the second year in a row DISD student achievement fell relative to the rest of Texas to an extent greater than any other year since before 2004!  Each 2014 and 2015 were worse, standing alone, than any year since before 2004!  I am working on a chart to demonstrate this tragedy.  It documents a much worse tragedy than the chart below.)

Using the data from that DMN article the following chart was made to reflect on the changes since 2012:

Dallas ISD STAAR Test Results for 2012 through 2015
The Dallas Morning News article linked above was far too reserved in saying these tests reflected "little progress."  If you look over the averages of the past 4 years you see a clear disaster unfolding.  The current tests from 2015 are clearly the WORST performance on this chart covering 4 years!

Dallas now had the results for the rest of Texas.  While Dallas dropped 1.5 percentage points on average for all tests grades 3-8, the entire State of Texas only dropped 2/10ths of one percent. 

The good news for the year before now, last year, is that DISD dropped 2.7 percentage points more than Texas.  This year that gap with Texas only grew by 1.3 percentage points, almost half the decline of last year.

Do we consider that progress?  DISD is only falling behind at half the rate they fell behind last year?

Sunday, May 17, 2015

First Annual Quintanilla Time-Capsule Opening

On 5-16-2015 Quintanilla began their annual Time-Capsule opening with the reunion of the Class of 2005.  It was a good day for many reasons. The students made the party significant. Many staff from Quintanilla in 2005 were present to celebrate with their former students. It was a great day!  Dozens of letters were returned to the students who wrote them a decade ago.

The letters that remain may be located in the Quintanilla Library. Call Quintanilla and ask for the library to verify if your letter is there: 972-502-3200. 

Sadly only 2/3 of the 536 students in the 8th grade in 2005 wrote letters so there is not one for everyone.  2005 was the first year.  The time-capsule system was just being created.  The Quintanilla Vault was installed the summer of 2005. Since then over 95% of 8th graders have written letters each year as they left Quintanilla for high school.  Graduation rates have doubled and many other positive changes have happened.

First Annual Quintanilla Time-Capsule Opening
Reunion for Class of 2005

The value of focusing middle school students onto their own futures, by simply having a system where they can do the planning for that future in letters to themselves, is infinite!  The more we do it, and the more we get parents involved writing their own letters to their child each year as to their evolving dreams for their child, the more progress we will see in our schools.   Our children must take control of their own lives with the active support of their parents.  We must help that happen.  They must be able to look back and see the changes, see the good, and see how they can change things. 

Then they need to share what they have learned with decade younger students back at their old middle school.   See   A community of change is evolving in our neighborhood!

Ultimately each child must realize that they are responsible themselves for what happens.  Nobody can do it for them.

Dallas ISD Administration's Fixed Mindset

Anyone who has studied Carol Dweck's 2006 classic, Mindset: The new Psychology of Success, understands quickly where Mike Miles stands related to his own mindset.  At one time this book was being spread all around Dallas ISD.  Those were the years, 2006 through 2012, when DISD became the most improved urban district in Texas by at least the judgment of one organization. Graduation rates went up 20 percentage points!  Dr. Dweck's book was visible around DISD.  That ended with Mr. Miles' arrival in 2012 with terrible results.

Ms. Anna Brining and her book
Monday, 5-18-15, at noon fortunately five board members voted to stop the termination of Ms. Brining's contract and that of two other teachers. 

Now, if a performance contract for the next year allows Brining to correct the alleged problems seen by DISD administration at Rosemont, we will see a supurb campus improve as it never has before! We will have united parents that would be the envy of any district.   Miles should take advantage of this opportunity if student achievement is his true goal and politics is not a part of this equation, as he stated more than once during today's board meeting.

Sadly since the above was written Superintendent Miles fired Ms. Brining.  Then her school received the highest ratings possible from the Texas Education Agency for the current school year, one of only 12 schools in DISD to secure such honors.  

See  .

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Dallas Kids First & Educate Dallas Strongly Supporting Mike Miles

The campaign finance reports filed by all candidates in the Dallas ISD May 9th elections are exceptionally revealing and have generated significant media coverage:

The range of fund raising was from nothing to $111,000 by this article.

But two organizations stick out in supporting those candidates who are presented as most strongly supporting Mike Miles and what he represents, Edwin Flores and Damarcus Offord.  They are Educate Dallas and Dallas Kids First.  Damarcus Offord is accurately presented in this article:

It is obvious that Educate Dallas and Dallas Kids First strongly support Mike Miles.  They also do not want to acknowledge the data that is collecting about damage to education under Mike Miles.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

War against Rosemont and all DISD children!

The battle in DISD intensified Friday May 1, 2015 with the Mayor and City Council succeeding in having 6 out of 9 DISD Trustees to ignore the massive data collecting, such as that at .  Instead the all only focused on misleading data from DISD such as this .  Read the comments carefully to this DMN article to see the rest of the story!

The 15 year principal at Rosemont Elementary, who has grown a small inner city school into one of the most popular elementary schools in all of DISD, is being fired due to her assertive parents who directly attacked Mike Miles and his methods.  She would not and probably could not stop them.  DISD looked up reasons to fire her and claims lack of academic progress is the problem.  Here are the most recent academic scores at Rosemont:

Rosemont grades 2015
Rosemont is a model of success that all DISD schools should be following!  It is also a dual language two-way K-8 school with a middle schools with some of the highest grade averages in all of DISD for middle schools, and the students are all bi-lingual!  This all happened during the past 15 years under Anna Brining.  Why is she suddenly fired with no time to correct any alleged problems?  

We now must get rid of the DISD Board members who will continue to ignore both the positive grades that DISD students are getting in some schools with any principal with a hint of independence being replaced.  The low grades in the large majority of schools, where money is being taken from students to help cover other projects by Mike Miles, those schools are being ignored. 

Dallas families have a crisis to solve in DISD!  Their votes this week can take a big step to do end this crisis.   Support Dr. Kyle Renard for District 1, ,  David Lewis for District 3, , and Trustee Bernadette Nutall for District 9. 

I have been working with David Lewis at the early voting locations, 5-5-15 is the last early voting day, and I think he will win.  The public has had enough of Mike Miles!   Here was a photo taken the morning of 5-5-15:
David Lewis working Early Voting location 5-5-15 morning.  Dan Micciche in distance.