Leading Off (8/15/08)

1. North Texas’ Nastia Liukin won the gold medal in the all-around Olympics gymnastics competition, besting fellow American Shawn Johnson by six-tenths of a point. Does this mean she automatically gets to be on a box of Wheaties, or am I showing how 40 I am? Do they still make Wheaties? Or do kids absorb nourishment through their iPods? So many questions for Nastia Liukin.

2. I’m not always on board with teacher gripes. (Too often, they take a myopic view of district-wide challenges.) But the complaints over the easing of grading standards for DISD are on the money. The fact that the new lax rules were developed by staff and did not need school board approval seems absurd. This wouldn’t happen on Nastia Liukin’s watch.

3. So confused: So, the DA’s office used to accept cases against people who were never arrested? WTF, mate? Well, as of today, they will no longer do that. Which makes so much sense I’m sure someone will point out why this is a horrible idea, as Harris and Tarrant County still takes “at-large” cases and says they sometimes lead to putting bad guys in jail at a later date. See why I’m confused? Can Nastia Liukin explain this to me?


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12 responses to “Leading Off (8/15/08)”

  1. Tim Rogers says:

    Re: teacher gripes. A certain teacher who shares a lot of genetic code with yrs trly was just griping to me the other day about Dallas ISD’s new fingerprint policy. She’s a substitute teacher. All subs are now required to get fingerprinted. Makes sense. Her complaint: the teachers have to pay for it themselves. $50. That’s close to what they earn for a day’s work.

    Yeah, I guess that would irritate me, too, if I were subbing. Maybe Nastia Liukin can pay for it?

  2. Craig says:

    Man, with callback humor like that, I have to wonder: when did Ben and Skin start ghost-writing Leading Off?

  3. Nathan says:

    Most of the crimes where people are issued on-site citations by the police are misdemeanors. Even if they were taken into custody, they would be out with time served in a matter of a few weeks at most. It’s a good reasonable policy considering how many people the DPD could arrest if they wanted to, and considering how much space we have in our jail.

  4. Nancy Nichols says:

    My perfect 13-year old niece says,”I think they make Wheaties and I think it is a a cereal. And I think it has something to do with wheat. But I only get music through my iPod.” However, sweet Eric, you are missing the real news of the day: for today, is Joe Jonas’ 19th birthday. Hello? What are you, new?

  5. Trey Garrison says:

    -Homework grades should be given only when the grades will “raise a student’s average, not lower it.”

    -Teachers must accept overdue assignments, and their principal will decide whether students are to be penalized for missing deadlines.

    -Students who flunk tests can retake the exam and keep the higher grade.

    -Teachers cannot give a zero on an assignment unless they call parents and make “efforts to assist students in completing the work.”

    Boy, I’m glad DISD doesn’t have lowered standards.

  6. Matt says:

    In some perfect world, the constables charged with serving warrants and arresting people actually do that, instead of whoring out for traffic enforcement to generate revenue. In a perfect world, not in Dallas.

  7. Wes Mantooth says:

    On one hand, DISD students’ grade averages will improve. On the other hand, they will actually learn less, both subjectively and in terms of learning that there are rules that have to be followed and negative consequences that result from the failure to follow the rules. Of course, none of that is tested on the TAKS test, so it need not be taught anymore.

    Once again, the Rule of Unintended Consequences reigns supreme. Good job, DISD.

  8. Louisa Meyer, Dallas ISD parent since 1993 says:

    #2. Agreed. This seems absurd. I’ll reserve judgement for further explanation or a reversal. In the meantime, I and other district supporters must endure the gleeful and smug commentary this report invites.

    Let’s also remember the limited reporting on:

  9. Sharon Boyd says:


    I’m impressed. You are an ardent DISD supporter, but clearly a realist who can consider new information.

    This DISD homework/test do-over scheme is the last straw. Homework forces students to use information they heard during the day. Homework also forces students to use discipline in their time schedule away from school. Both good training as a future employee or business owner.

    I am proud of the teachers for speaking out. They are in an impossible situation caused by Dr. H and this terrible school board.

  10. Louisa Meyer, Dallas ISD parent since 1993 says:

    Likewise, Sharon, when the district does something right, you’ll let us know you approve?

  11. Sharon Boyd says:

    I absolutely will say something positive WHEN the DISD does anything right. May be a long time —

  12. Louisa Meyer, Dallas ISD parent since 1993 says:

    Say, Sharon, a search of your website turned up nothing on this: