State gives HISD B+ grade, unlikely to prevent TEA intervention

Critical report cards are out for Texas public schools, including accountability measurements for each campus in the state's largest district, Houston ISD.

First, the good news.

More than 92 percent of HISD's campuses earned a passing grade, including Kashmere High, which had received failing marks for the past eight years.

In fact, HISD's overall score of 88 was higher than any urban district in the Lone Star State.

"We did better than Dallas. They are supposed to be the shining light. We did better than almost every school district in this area, despite the nonsense on the board," said HISD Trustee Jolanda Jones.

 More on the "nonsense" later.

Offsetting the notable success was word that Wheatley High School was among 21 HISD campuses receiving a grade of "F". That's significant because Wheatley's inability to elevate academically marked the 7th straight year of failure, triggering a tough state law mandating either closure of the campus or complete replacement of the entire school board.

The latter is far more likely, given the open racial hostility, potential violation of open meetings law and shady practices committed by a majority of the current trustees.

Former board president and current trustee Rhonda Skillern-Jones offered perspective.

"Despite the disfunction of the board, these kids are happy and healthy and we are on our way to an upper trajectory that can't be stopped," said Skillern-Jones.

 It is authentic, documented progress at HISD many attribute to interim superintendent Grentia Lathan, who offered a bold prediction.

"Wheatley will continue to move forward. Wheatley will be the poster child of success for urban education in this country," said Lathan.

Investigators with the Texas Education Agency have recommended a state takeover of HISD.

Today, Superintendent Lathan said the district is unlikely to appeal the failing grade for Wheatley which increases the likelihood TEA Commissioner Mike Morath will order an intervention.