Back To School Brings Plenty of Changes - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Back To School

What You Need To Know About The New School Year

Back To School Brings Plenty of Changes



    North Texas Students will see some changes this year when school starts Monday morning, August 25. (Published Sunday, Aug. 24, 2014)

    North Texas Students will see some changes this year when school starts Aug. 25. 


    More than 2,000 new teachers will greet students for classes today after Dallas ISD announced an additional 389 positions this year to help address a change in class sizes. Superintendent Mike Miles said nearly every district student will start the year with a full-time teacher – a change from years past.

    The district also added 50 new vehicles to transport about 3,000 homeless, special-education and magnet-school students to classes.

    Miles said they added about 1,000 pre-school students this year after a massive early childhood registration push.

    Miles said another priority is to implement the new teacher evaluation system passed last year as a solution to pay teachers based on their performance instead of tenure. Soon, teachers’ pay will be based on student achievement, in-class evaluation and student feedback.

    If you have any questions about the district, call their Back-to-School Hotline at 972-925-KIDS (5437). The communication director said the number of calls during the first week of school triples the normal number they receive.

    If your child still needs immunizations, check to see if your school is one of about 11 DISD schools that now have a clinic. For more information on those Youth and Family Centers, call 972-502-4190.


    In the Fort Worth ISD, the new World Languages Institute will welcome 6th and 7th graders interested in learning in a dual-language environment. The school will add a grade each year after.


    More than 100 freshman will start classes at the new Arlington Collegiate High School, built on the campus of Tarrant County College Southeast. Unlike typical high schools, students will earn college credits. The school will add one class every year going forward.

    Superintendent Dr. Marcelo Cavazos will host a tweet-along as he tours 12 campuses in the district on the first day of school. He'll post photos from his school visits. You can follow him @ArlingtonISD or @AISDSuper.


    Lewisville ISD will open its brand-new, multi-million dollar Aquatics Center. A ribbon cutting for the center is set for Sept. 30. 


    In the Frisco ISD, five new schools will welcome students including Independence High School.

    Hosp, McSpedden, Newman and Scott elementary schools will also open. Frisco ISD will welcome 49,500 students, up by 3,000 since June.

    The district expects to welcome its 50,000th student at some point during the 2014-15 school year. According to a FISD release, student enrollment is projected to hit 66,000 students by 2020.

    Three additional schools are under construction right now to relieve overcrowding and make room for incoming students. They are expected to open by the fall of 2015. The district has not announced any plans for redistricting students to those campuses yet.


    Denton ISD is preparing for 1,000 new students, which will increase the population in Denton to more than 26,000 students. In the past 15 years, the district has doubled in size.

    "Our teachers and principals have been preparing from the day school let out last year, all to get ready for this important back to school time," said David Hicks, Denton's Executive Director of Secondary Academic Programs.

    To keep up with the growth int he district, Dorothy Adkins Elementary opens this semester, becoming Denton ISD's 22nd elementary school.


    New this year in the Mesquite ISD, all sixth graders will get iPads to use on campus. Students will use them mainly for social studies and science. Some Pre-K and Kindergarten students will also get to use iPads for help with certain subjects.

    Teachers will also use iPad apps to help with their lessons.


    In the Garland ISD, an art program will be taught at 11 elementary schools. Art will be taught in all 47 elementary schools by 2019. Previously, art was only taught in Garland's magnet, middle and high schools.


    Students in Duncanville ISD will look a little different this year, as the district relaxed the school dress code earlier this month. Students don't have to wear belts anymore, they can wear untucked shirts without a collar. However, shirts must still cover their stomachs and pants cannot sag.


    The Irving ISD educators are getting ready for a new school year and a brand new school curriculum. According to the Dallas Morning News, most schools will have a different principal this year. In his first full year as the head of Irving ISD, Superintendent Jose Parra is trying to add mentors in the classrooms and software that will help teachers focus on students who need the most help.


    Big changes are in store for Mansfield ISD and the district is asking for patience as the district finishes several major construction projects that were planned as part of the bond package voters approved back in 2011.


    The Northwest ISD opens for classes on Aug. 26. 

    New this year, all elementary schools will offer a fresh fruit and vegetable bar.