Texas A&M May Name Its Academic Building After Stalwart Student Rick Perry

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Stu Seeger
Coming soon to Yale: The George W. Bush honors dorm.
Update: December 18, 3:28 p.m.: Governor Perry has announced that he will decline having the building named after him.

"Upon deep reflection, I have informed the Board of Regents of my decision to politely decline this great honor. I do so because certain places on this campus, like our most sacred traditions, transcend any one individual," Perry said in remarks obtained by The Texas Tribune.

In what would be a fitting end to Governor Rick Perry's reign, his alma mater, Texas A&M University, will consider renaming its iconic Academic Building the "Rick Perry '72" building during its board of regents meeting Thursday.

Perry attended the school from 1968 until 1972, making exactly two A's against nine D's and one F during his four-year tenure. He was more successful outside of the classroom, where he was a member of A&M's corps and a yell leader.

When Perry's transcripts were first made public in 2011, a college classmate told the Huffington Post that Perry wasn't the most studious guy on campus.

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SMU Violated Title IX, Failed Victims in Handling Sexual Assault Claims, Feds Say

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In late September 2012, an SMU freshman, just a month into his life on campus, went to university police to report that he'd been sexually assaulted at a frat party. He hoped the school could help -- help protect him from his alleged assailant, help save him from further embarrassment on campus.

Instead, the student says, school officials did basically the opposite. They sent a campus-wide alert, over his objections, that made it clear he'd gone to police. While the police investigated, a high-ranking school official discouraged him from pursuing charges. They did nothing meaningful to protect him from retaliation, the student says, and when he was bullied out of his original dorm they moved him to a floor where the resident assistant was a frat brother of his alleged attacker.

The student makes these allegations in a lawsuit he filed against the school in September. Since then, SMU's lawyers have been busy disputing them, vowing that the school acted properly. But the U.S. Department of Education, after a sprawling investigation into the school's response to this and other incidents of sexual harassment and assault on campus, has found that SMU failed the student in the aftermath of his alleged assault, creating a hostile environment that eventually forced the student to drop out of school.

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If I'd Had to Take DISD's Art, Music and P.E. Tests, I Would Have Failed

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Department of the Interior. Bureau of Indian Affairs. Pierre Agency
These young women would've excelled on the exams, we're sure.
Providing yet another reason for me to be thankful I never have to attend another day of primary school, The Dallas Morning News' Matthew Haag enumerated a little of what's on DISD's controversial exams for elective courses in elementary school Thursday afternoon. They are tough.

The list is littered with stuff I couldn't do now, much less when I was a kid. Kindergarten art students are expected to "[c]reate artworks using a variety of lines, shapes, colors, textures, and forms." Maybe, maybe expecting a 5-year-old to color within the lines is reasonable, but to appropriately use texture? C'mon.

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MacArthur Point Guard Is Suing Irving ISD for Her Right to Play Varsity Basketball

The Texas UIL's system of determining high school athletic eligibility has meted out another dose of its strange justice. Gabrielle Gregory, a junior point guard at Irving MacArthur and a four-star recruit who's made a verbal commitment to Kansas State, has been sidelined for the first weeks of the season while awaiting a decision from the local district executive committee on whether she lives where she says she lives.

Gregory enrolled at MacArthur in January after spending two years at Triple A Academy, a Dallas charter with an uncommon concentration of basketball talent. According to her previous athletic participation form, Gregory and her mother, Tamika George, had recently moved from a small house in Dallas near Love Field into her aunt's apartment in Irving.

To be eligible to play basketball, Gregory and her mom had to prove that they had, in fact, moved to the Irving apartment as they claimed on their enrollment documents and that they hadn't done so for "athletic purposes." The first they accomplished by signing an affidavit swearing they lived with the aunt and then, when their residence in the apartment was called into question, causing Gregory to be pulled from school one month into the spring semester, by having mom's name added to the sister's lease. Proving the second, inasmuch as human motivation is complex and difficult to divine from outside a person's brain, is basically impossible.

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Kimball Basketball Loses Two Starters to Dallas ISD's Recruiting Crackdown

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On Thursday, Christian Davis, far left, and Kristopher Martin, center, were ruled ineligible to play at Kimball this season.
It was never going to be easy for Kimball to win its fourth state basketball title in five years. The heart of last year's team, 6-foot-7-inch small forward D'Angelo Allen, was gone for University of Missouri. Gone, too, was longtime Kimball Coach Royce "Snoop" Johnson, who was fired in the wake of last spring's Dallas ISD athletics recruiting scandal, though not for recruiting but for tweeting something dumb.

It seemed, though, that longtime Kimball assistant Nick Smith was primed to pick up where Johnson had left off. Smith, after all, had studied under Johnson for years. He knew the kids, knew the system and his roster was stacked. Standout guard Jawun Evans, one of the area's top prospects, was returning for his senior season, and he was to be joined in the starting lineup by four other Division 1 recruits, a remarkable collection of talent on a public high school hoops team.

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Egghead Researchers Say Dallas Is Not a Smart City. Hah! We Is To.

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Don't you tell us how smart we are.
Boston is the smartest large city in the United States, according to a new study from New Geography. Dallas did not fare nearly as well.

The numbers behind the rankings are straightforward. Weight is given to the number of college graduates in each of the Census Bureau's Metropolitan Statistical Areas as well as any percentage increase in the number of graduates over the time measured (2000-2013).

As of 2013, 32.6 percent of DFW residents have at least a bachelors degree, a 4.1 percent increase since 2000. By the researchers' calculation, that leaves Dallas as the 41st smartest large city of the 52 measured.

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TXU Hits Duncanville ISD With $1.2 Million Electric Bill

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Duncanville ISD thought it was getting a great deal when, one year ago this month, it switched electric providers and signed on with the State Power Program through the state's General Land Office. Just like that, Duncanville ISD's price-per-kilowatt hour dropped almost 20 percent, from 7.3 cents to a maximum of 6 cents.

But Duncanville school officials overlooked one important maxim when it comes to selecting an electric provider: You don't fuck with TXU.

Duncanville ISD had been contracting with the electric utility since 2009. The deal, thanks to an extension signed in 2012, was locked in through 2016. Now that the deal's been broken, TXU says in a lawsuit filed on Tuesday that the district owes $1.2 million.

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After Hours of Testimony, Board Delays First Vote On Social Studies Textbooks

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US Capitol
These dudes were obviously thinking of Moses and King Solomon when they made the United States.

On Tuesday, the State Board of Education met for the final hearing on the adoption of new social studies textbooks. The board intended to cast the first vote on the textbooks, with the final vote scheduled for Friday. But after hours of impassioned testimony from both the right and the left, the board postponed any official action on the books until Friday.

See also: SMU Academics Speak Out Against Political and Religious Bias in Texas Social Studies Textbooks

The adoption process has been riddled with controversy. Critics were quick to point out that certain passages that alluded to climate change denialism. Moreover, many textbooks emphasized Christianity and Christian theology as not only the dominant religion in the United States, but implicitly the superior religion. Several books were plagued with misinformation and sloppy rhetoric.

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Highland Park HS Keeps Genesis on Required Reading List Despite Smut

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Lot and his daughters. "Oh, man, I'm sho drunk right now I don't know whatsh going on."

Last week, Highland Park ISD released its updated high school reading list. The list provided titles required for in-class reading, optional outside reading and the passive aggressive list of "approved" but not taught in the classroom reading.

Students will have to get parental permission to read six books on the required and outside choice list: Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray, Jeanette Walls' The Glass Castle, Bram Stoker's Dracula, Garth Stein's The Art of Racing in the Rain, Aldous Huxley's Brave New World and David K. Shipler's Working Poor: Invisible in America.

See also: Highland Park ISD Bans Books Because Sex

HPISD Superintendent Dawson Orr will make the final decision on all English department books at the December 9 board meeting.

Let's hope that between now and then someone tips Orr to certain oversights in the list, which -- we're shocked to note -- includes the biblical book of Genesis as required reading for English IV classes, no permission slips required.

Seriously, Highland Park, have none of you heathens ever read Genesis?

Smut. Smut. Smut. It's nothing but smut.

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Duncanville Teacher Who Said "Dumb Duck Ass Crackers" Should "Kill Themselves" Resigns

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Vinita Hegwood, the Duncanville High School English teacher whose profane tweet aimed at "dumb duck ass crackers" went viral on conservative social media, has resigned, she announced Thursday afternoon.

Hegwood was suspended without pay in anticipation of her being fired after her Friday night tweet went viral

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