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Since 1996 kids at McLennan County’s Juvenile Detention Center have been able to prepare for the GED through Waco ISD’s Challenge Academy. But last year the campus lost its certification and students who prepared for the GED there were no longer allowed to take the test. As KWBU’s Jill Ament reports, the school is now applying to get its certification back. 

Ryland Barton

Students who enroll in the Texas State Technical College system range from recent high school grads to older folks who’ve been out of school for years. But all of the students are trying to learn skill sets to improve their career opportunities, and usually, make more money. Last year the Texas Legislature changed the way TSTC is funded—no longer would the school be funded based on how many students were at the school or how long they stayed—but rather, the school would be rewarded for how much alumni wages are above the minimum wage.

Jill Ament

Bell's Hill Elementary school in Waco is getting high-needs students to eat healthier and learn about where their food comes from. Today a U.S. Department of Agriculture administrator stopped by to tour the school and check out the school’s lunch program. 

Jill Ament

A new district wide program at Waco ISD is utilizing behavioral specialists on campuses struggling with student behavior and discipline referrals. Overall -- district leaders are hoping this more ‘individualized’ approach will help boost STAAR scores at lower performing schools.  

The Texas Education Agency has asked the federal government for grants to­ fund an expansion of pre-k programs statewide for moderate and low-income families.

Texas will compete with 35 other states, and Washington, D.C., and is eligible to receive up to $30 million annually over a four-year grant window. The grant expansion is offering a total of $160 million nationwide. The new federal grant would help states that currently serve more than 10 percent of four years olds to build and expand on those programs, which have faced drastic cuts over the years.

More people are attending public colleges and universities in Texas, but members of the Texas House Committee on Higher Education heard this week that the increases are not across all groups.

Susan Brown, the assistant commissioner of Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board for planning and accountability, told lawmakers on Tuesday that enrollment at Texas colleges is up by about 21,000 students right now, but enrollment among white students had declined for the third straight year.

Jill Ament

In this edition of Behind the Story, I’m featuring my full conversation with Dr. John Jenkins, the new principal at Waco ISD’s Indian Spring Middle School.

I’m excited to be able to feature this full interview with Jenkins because he has a lot of plans for the school. And in the story we aired earlier this week on Indian Spring’s new leadership, I felt I was unable to capture everything Jenkins wants to do for this struggling campus in just 2 minutes and thirty seconds. 

Jill Ament

Waco ISD’s Indian Spring Middle School has seen its fair share of struggles over the past few years. 75-percent of the Title 1 Priority School’s staff has been replaced for the 2014-2015 school year. But the school’s new principal is hoping to bring a vision of success to campus.

Football legend Deion Sanders is used to the media spotlight. The two-time Super Bowl winner earned the nickname "Prime Time" for his flashy style and aggressive speed. But it's his Prime Prep Academy that's been grabbing headlines lately. 

The charter school founded by the former Dallas Cowboys cornerback suffered a string of setback, including allegations that led the Texas Education Agency to revoke its charter. The school is currently appealing the decision, but it's in hot water once again for opening a second campus without TEA approval. 

Texas Standard host David Brown spoke to Dallas Morning News reporter Jeff Mosier about the state of the charter school and its outspoken founder. You can read some of the interview highlights below. 

Is Google's Free Software A Good Deal For Educators?

Aug 26, 2014

Kaitlin Morgan says, this year, her school district is going "full Google."

Morgan teaches U.S. and world history and advises the yearbook at Woodlake Union High School in California's Central Valley. At Woodlake, "full Google" means a plan to have one Google Chromebook for every two students by the spring, running Google Apps.

The Chromebook is a relatively cheap, stripped-down laptop. It's become popular in the education world, with 85 percent of its U.S. sales last year going to the ed market.