Author: East Texas Review

Tyler Innovation Pipeline memberships available May 8

Tyler has a long history of entrepreneurship. Dating back to the 1930’s and the discovery of the East Texas oilfield, Tyler has built a vibrant, diverse economy based upon small business ingenuity. The Innovation Pipeline is the next step in this continued legacy. The Tyler Innovation Pipeline is both a place and a network that brings together those doing tremendous work in Tyler to foster innovation, entrepreneurship and community involvement. The brick and mortar location is at 217 East Oakwood Street, Tyler, TX 75702 across the street from the Cottonbelt Depot. The Tyler Innovation Pipeline is a member-based organization....

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Longview poised for Amphitheatre

Joycelyne Fadojutimi The Longview Economic Development Board, LEDCO; the city of Longview and various community leaders came together Wednesday evening at the Maude Cobb center to digest and absorb information on the new civic amphitheater slated for construction. Among those meeting with local officials were Michael Miller of Convention, Sports, and Leisure (CSL), an International Market Feasibility Firm, who has worked on several such projects, most recently a 15,000- to 20,000-seat amphitheater in Los Angeles. CSL is a leading advisory and planning firm specializing in providing consulting services to the convention, sport, entertainment, and visitor industries. CSL has conducted...

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TSTA: Education commissioner drops test scores as requirement for teacher evaluations

The Texas State Teachers Association (TSTA) announced today that Education Commissioner Mike Morath has agreed to drop a requirement that at least 20 percent of a teacher’s evaluation be based on value added measures (VAM) such as standardized test scores. TSTA sued the commissioner last year for including that provision in the Texas Teacher Evaluation and Support System (TTESS), the new state-recommended teacher evaluation system. In a negotiated settlement of the lawsuit, the amended evaluation system will allow individual school districts to determine how to measure the progress of a teacher’s students by “one or more student growth measures” of their own choosing. TSTA contended in its suit that state law — Section 21.351 of the Texas Education Code — clearly requires a teacher appraisal system adopted by the commissioner to be based on “observable, job-related behavior.” Section 21.352 of the Texas Education Code sets the same “observable, job-related behavior” requirement for school districts that choose to create their own appraisal systems. But a VAM model is not “observable,” and evaluation standards based on VAM models often are incomprehensible to the teachers being evaluated. A VAM model typically is based on a complicated formula that compares actual student test scores to the scores predicted by a mathematical target based on the test scores of similar student populations. The American Statistical Association has discredited VAM models as ineffective measurements of...

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Teachers get sweet appreciation

It was a tasty recognition for Tyler Independent School District educators on Teacher Appreciation Day. Smith County Commissioner JoAnn Hampton, County Administrator Leonardo Brown and Pre-Trial Services Director Gary Pinkerton delivered cakes to Boulter Middle School Principal Rodney Curry and Thomas B. Ramey Elementary School Principal Tremayna Thomas to share with their teachers.             “We want to show our teachers in Tyler what a great job they do, and how much we appreciate them,” Hampton said. “The teachers and staff at our schools do outstanding work every day to teach our children.”             Apart from the Christian ministry there...

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AG Paxton Warns Texans of Price Gouging in Wake of Disaster

– Following a weekend of severe weather and deadly tornadoes in East Texas, Attorney General Ken Paxton today warned Texans that state law prohibits price gouging in the wake of a declared disaster. A disaster proclamation was issued by Texas Governor Greg Abbott for Henderson, Rains and Van Zandt counties.   “Natural disasters can pull communities together, but, unfortunately, they can also pull in unscrupulous individuals looking to scam vulnerable citizens,” Attorney General Paxton said. “As East Texans rebuild and recover, my office will work to protect them from price gouging and any deceptive acts.”   The governor’s disaster declaration prohibits individuals or businesses in the affected counties from charging exorbitant prices for necessities such as food, drinking water, clothing, lodging and gas. Price gouging is illegal, and the disaster declaration triggers stiff penalties under the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act.   Disaster victims in East Texas who encounter price gouging or home repair scams are encouraged to call the attorney general’s office at 1-800-252-8011 or file a complaint online at...

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