When Terry Grier came in as the new superintendent of Houston ISD in September 2009, many critics of the alternative schools operated by Community Education Partners were encouraged when he started questioning why the district was farming out some of its kids. At board workshops, Grier made it clea ... More >>
Previous statements are inoperativeFriends of Hair Balls have been besieging us in the last couple of days, insisting that Houston ISD Superintendent Terry Grier misspoke when he testified before a Senate Committee on Education that the district has never used general funds to finance Apollo ... More >>
Terry Grier is calling for a less expensive CEP contract Updated: With comments from board agenda meeting at end of story. Community Education Partners will shutter its Ferndale campus as a result of an amended contract calling for it to receive $1.8 million less a year from the Houston IS ... More >>
Settled but confidentialWe'll never know if Community Education Partners would have been able to prove its contention in court that its chief critic, civic activist Robert Kimball, really was responsible for damaging its business in the Houston ISD and elsewhere in the state. That's because ... More >>
CEP ups the legal ante against a criticCivic activist and former Sharpstown High vice principal Robert Kimball is responsible for Houston ISD reducing the amount it pays Community Education Partners, the private company that operates two alternative schools in Houston, and therefore should be ... More >>
CEP: Turns out it's NOT always sunny in PhiladelphiaWhile Houston ISD -- after some close inspection -- decided to renew its multi-million dollar (albeit somewhat lowered) contract with Community Education Partners, school boards in Philadelphia and Fort Myers, Florida were not so enthralled with ... More >>
ApprovedHouston school board trustees voted 6-1Thursday to renew HISD's contract with Community Education Partners. The roughly $14 million contract with the Nashville-based alternative schooling program for at-risk students had received harsh criticism from the League of United Latin ... More >>
Big vote tonightThe Houston Independent School District's board is expected to vote later today to renew its contract with a controversial company that handles students with disciplinary problems. The ACLU of Texas isn't too happy about that.The ACLU wrote a letter to HISD superintendent Terry Gr ... More >>
You get what you pay for?Houston's League of United Latin Americans chapter is slamming a glowing evaluation of the two Community Education Partners schools conducted by two A&M professors.The professors' report, which according to an HISD spokesperson was financed by CEP, found tha ... More >>
To CEP, with loveDr. Roger D. Goddard of Texas A&M has completed his much-delayed investigation of Community Education Partners, the controversial private firm that operates two alternative schools packed with Houston ISD kids, and given it a glowing endorsement.The report, obtained by ... More >>
Photo by Margaret DowningCEP survives another day, even under GrierThere will be trims. There will be millions of dollars in savings. There will be new initiatives and new monitoring, but the bottom line is: Community Education Partners will continue to operate its two alternative schools in Hou ... More >>
Houston ISD board member Manuel Rodriguez has sent out "an open letter to the Taxpayers of HISD" in which he defends the private firm Community Education Partners' operation of its two alternative schools in Houston.HISD Superintendent Terry Grier has proposed ending the contract with CEP, saying ... More >>
Plus: HISD May Say Good-bye to CEP
Photo by Margaret DowningHouston ISD Superintendent Terry Grier is pitching extending the school year to his principals, waiting to see who is going to sign up for the cause. Because the one thing he wants to stress to everyone, he said (taking the pre-emptive action approach) is that it will not ... More >>
The new HISD credit recovery program matches students with a software program and a coach to get them fast-tracked to graduation.
Houston ISD Superintendent Terry Grier told Hair Balls today that he has a verbal agreement from the leaders of Community Education Partners that they will extend their contract renewal deadline until March 1, 2010.Grier wants a more thorough review of CEP, the private firm that operates two ... More >>
Photos by Margaret DowningMary Almendarez, first vice president for LULAC Council 402, leads off the press conference Monday, in support of terminating the Houston ISD's contract with Community Education Partners.It was one of those great, if little noticed moments in Houston history, as separate ... More >>
New Houston ISD Superintendent Terry Grier is reportedly ready to cancel the school district's contract with CEP (Community Education Partners), the private company that operates two controversial alternative schools in Houston.And on Monday, a local chapter of LULAC will hold a pre ... More >>
Robert Kimball, the former Houston ISD educator, who has spoken long, loudly -- and not positively -- about the two alternative schools operated in Houston by the for-profit Community Education Partners (where HISD parks its kids it deems bad), had every hope that Tuesday would see an end t ... More >>
Last week when Hair Balls reported that LULAC (the League of United Latin American Citizens) had sent letters to the Texas Education Agency and the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts saying it should investigate Houston ISD for the amount of money it spends on two private alternative schools, we w ... More >>
Last night the Austin school board squelched, at least for now, any consideration of a partnership with Community Education Partners, the Nashville-based, for-profit operator of alternative schools that has two facilities in Houston. CEP would have operated an alternative center for students in the ... More >>
It looks like Austin ISD is ready to take the Houston ISD route and dump some of its troubled kids into the hands of Community Education Partners, the for-profit operator of alternative schools throughout the country. CEP operates two facilities here in Houston and as we've noted before, seems to be ... More >>
Robert Kimball, whose criticism of the privately run school where HISD sends its troubled students was so stinging (or effective) that the school is suing to shut him up, won a round in court today.Community Education Partners is suing Kimball because he's been making clear he believes CEP is a "dro ... More >>
The Houston Independent School District Administration is recommending to the board that the district sign an almost $19.3 million contract with Community Education Partners, the private company that operates two alternative schools here.Despite years of criticism of the operations at the Ferndale a ... More >>
Next week's Houston Independent School District Board meeting coincides with its self-imposed January 15 deadline for whether it will continue to fork over $17 million a year to the private Community Education Partners for its two alternative schools here. CEP and HISD agreed to a contract extension ... More >>
And all this time we thought HISD Abe Saavedra’s outreach to dropouts was just in the kids’ best interest. Turns out, it can be a money maker as well – or at least that’s the pitch made in a July 31, 2008 letter to the superintendent from a local attorney speaking on behalf of the private al ... More >>
HISD faced a tough decision on whether to renew its $18 million annual contract with Community Education Partners, the outfit some critics have accused of warehousing troubled students instead of helping them. The school district had a deadline of August 15 to notify CEP whether they planned to ren ... More >>
The Houston Press has dedicated a lot of time and space to looking at Community Education Partners. Recently, the American Civil Liberties Union’s Racial Justice Program in New York City went into Atlanta, decided the CEP there was pretty much worthless and filed suit charging it with not educatin ... More >>
HISD continues to send students to CEP. Whether they go there, stay there or return successfully to their home school is anyone's guess.
A donation stirs things up at LULAC
Is Yvette Lacobie really a terrorist? Did legislators really mean to kick kids out for a butter knife? Is zero tolerance really stupid? (No, maybe and yes.)
A lawsuit accuses HISD's former chief and a trustee of influence-peddling
The district will follow Dallas in preparing to end contract alternative education
Plus: Taking ExCEPtion
Plus: Porn Priorities?, House Woes, Sit on It
Some CEP students have been locked in for years
By falling behind in reports on educating kids, Harris County may lose hundreds of thousands in state grants. Or more.
HISD cuts $2 million from CEP's lucrative deal and adds more controls.
Rod Paige searches for the perfect image, and CEP wiggles in even closer to the power source -- wherever it can find it
HISD settles with parents over CEP punishments
HISD and a paid trustee get entangled in the spreading empire of a private firm touting safe alternative schools for troubled kids. So why are some students and parents so scared?
Davy and Mike, ExCEPtion to the Rule, Heat's On
Investigate CEP, Santa Fe's Shame, Politics Makes Strange...
Ungraded exams. Suspect scores. Departing teachers and lawsuits. Is this alternative school really passing the test on its highly touted educational claims?
Children get burned by HISD over a gun-shaped lighter
This HISD program teaches a big lesson: Don't question what the district touts