1. New state vape law could place McKinney ISD students in alternative school
McKinney ISD officials have updated its student code of conduct for the 2023-24 school year to comply with a new state law regarding youth vaping. MISD's board of trustees unanimously approved the updates at an Aug. 28 meeting.
“Because of [House Bill] 114, we have THC and e-cigarettes added to the list of requirements for a mandatory [Disciplinary Alternative Education Program] placement,” said Michael Winters, MISD’s senior director of administrative services, during the school board meeting.
2. Tarrant Appraisal District leader given vote of no confidence; employee fired
An employee of the Tarrant Appraisal District was fired Aug. 25 after an internal investigation.
Cal Wood, director of information systems at TAD, was released from his position Aug. 25 after he was initially suspended. The suspension came shortly after comments from Wood surfaced where he suggested “creating a false narrative that distances the truth from the media,” according to a letter issued by the mayors of Keller, Southlake and Colleyville.
TAD said in a news release that Wood was terminated after the agency’s attorney conducted the internal investigation.
3. Collin College holds ceremony to launch new automotive technician training program
Collin College held a signing ceremony for the launch of its new automotive technician training program Aug. 25.
The college partnered with Toyota to offer the Toyota Technician Education Network, or T-TEN, program.
The program is meant to serve as a fast track for students looking to serve as technicians in Toyota or Lexus dealerships by providing training on the latest technology in Toyota vehicles.
“This partnership is a huge win for Toyota, Collin College and all of North Texas,” said Holly Dieterle, Toyota general manager of quality division.
4. Frisco ISD updates student code for new state vaping law
FISD’s school board unanimously approved updating its student code of conduct for the 2023-24 school year to include the new rules Aug. 14. This updated policy has the district in compliance with new state laws regarding e-cigarette use, also known as vaping, by students.
“We are sure that this is going to be a significant change for our families and our students,” said Paige Hoes, FISD’S managing director of secondary student services. “Unfortunately, students do sometimes bring e-cigarettes or vaping devices to school.”
5. Denton County officials share child trafficking prevention tips, information
Denton County law enforcement and advocacy groups met with the public Aug. 22 to discuss information on child sex trafficking, bringing with them a bevy of statistics, prevention tips and common misconceptions.
The legal definition of child sex trafficking is to “cause, induce, persuade or attempt to cause, induce or persuade” a minor into a commercial sex act.
Statistics provided by the Children’s Advocacy Center of North Texas show Hispanic children and girls in general as the highest percentage of those trafficked. Boys are also trafficked, although cases involving them are “especially underreported,” according to the panel.
Officials with the center said 15 is the most common victim age with some cases reporting sex trafficking for children as young as 9, according to Kristen Howell, center CEO.