Montgomery ISD parents say 'No' to dual language program consolidation

Legislators in the Texas House of Representatives and Senate have different plans to fix the beleaguered public education financing system.

Legislators in the Texas House of Representatives and Senate have different plans to fix the beleaguered public education financing system.

Image description
Montgomery ISD weighs consolidating dual language program amid parent pushback
Montgomery ISD is facing concerted opposition from parents for its proposal to consolidate its dual language program for students who want to learn in both English and Spanish. A group of parents spoke at an Oct. 15 MISD board meeting to share their concerns with the district.

The district is considering consolidating the program in the 2020-21 school year but had yet to reach a final decision as of press time, Director of Special Programs Jada Mullins said.

The proposal is to move MISD’s dual language program—which is currently offered at Stewart Creek and Lincoln elementary schools—to one campus, Montgomery Elementary School, Community Impact Newspaper previously reported. The decision follows MISD’s projections for a $4.4 million budget shortfall for the 2019-20 school year. As of press time, Community Impact Newspaper has not received a response from MISD on how much money the consolidation could save the district.

According to the district, the benefits of consolidating include increased teacher collaboration and planning; shared resources; maximum use of facilities, transportation and staff; and the option to have two teachers per grade level to split the curriculum load.

But parents such as Christina Guessagba Sato, who has three children enrolled in the program, voiced disapproval. Sato likened the move to segregation, saying it essentially removes Spanish speakers from one school and places them in another.

Isabel Chapa, a dual language parent, said busing students to another campus will cause a disruption.

“For our kids, every little change is a struggle,” Chapa said. “Moving our kids’ program from one school to another slows down their progress.”

Parents also said they feel information is not being communicated clearly and in a timely manner.

At a Sept. 4 dual language program parent meeting she attended, Sato said about 45 families were represented, and although a short presentation was made in Spanish, many parents did not understand the actual presentation, which was made in English.

“No parent approved of the proposed program relocation,” she said.

At the Oct. 15 meeting, multiple parents said they fear the consolidation will lead to less program participation, and funding is dependent on participation.

Chapa said her children have benefited academically and socially from the program. She said parents such as herself are happy to volunteer to help ensure the program’s success.

“We’re here to let you know we want to help make this program even better,” Chapa said.
By Eva Vigh
Eva Vigh joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2018 as a reporter for Spring and Klein. Prior to this position, she covered upstream oil and gas news for a drilling contractors' association.


Texas Commissioner of Education Mike Morath announced in a June 30 State Board of Education meeting that students will be taking the STAAR in the 2020-21 school year. (Courtesy Pixabay)
Education organizations call for STAAR requirements to be waived another year

Gov. Greg Abbott waived the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR, testing requirements in March of earlier this year in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

With a clinical background in internal, pulmonary and critical care medicine, Corry has been with BCM for 20 years. He now focuses primarily on inflammatory lung diseases, such as asthma and smoking-related chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases. (Graphic by Ronald Winters/Community Impact Newspaper)
Q&A: Baylor College of Medicine's Dr. David Corry discusses immunity, vaccine production amid COVID-19 pandemic

Rapid development and distribution of a vaccine worldwide and successful achievement of herd immunity will be key players in determining the lifespan of the COVID-19 pandemic, said Dr. David Corry, a professor of Medicine in the Immunology, Allergy and Rheumatology Section at Baylor College of Medicine.

The county's active case count rose July 10 after three straight days of declines. (Community Impact staff)
Montgomery County adds 40 active COVID-19 cases, reaches 3,000 cumulative cases July 10

Five new hospitalizations and 87 new recoveries were also reported July 10.

The new partnership will provide on-site, same-day testing and results for assisted-living facility staff and their residents. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
State announces partnership for increased COVID-19 testing for patients, staff at assisted-living facilities, nursing homes

These test sites will help the state work toward the goal of processing up to 100,000 tests in the first month.

Texas Medical Center reports only 4% uptick in ICU bed use despite continued COVID-19 case increases

Compared to 1,350 total intensive care units in use June 30, Texas Medical Center has seen only a slight uptick in occupancies since then, with 1,394 reported July 9.

When interest rates are low, homeowners may look to save money by refinancing, which means getting a new mortgage with a better term or interest rate to lower payments. (Source: Matt Frankel/Community Impact Newspaper)
Refinancing a home, police departments address protests: Popular news this week from Greater Houston

Read popular stories from the Greater Houston area on Community Impact Newspaper’s website.

Lone Star College had almost 3,000 foreign students attend in the spring semester this year. (Andrew Christman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Immigration and Customs Enforcement rules could affect thousands of Lone Star College students

Lone Star College is currently unsure how a recent ICE rule will be affected its foreign student population.

Montgomery reviewed its comprehensive plan July 8. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)
Here are 5 takeaways from Montgomery's comprehensive plan

The plan had special recommendations related to housing, transportation, economic development, community facilities and the downtown area.

Montgomery County's active COVD-19 cases total 2,876. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Montgomery County reports decrease in active coronavirus cases for third day in a row

An additional 122 people have recovered, and the seven-day new case average is currently decreasing.

Effective July 9, hospitals in more than 100 counties across the state must now postpone elective surgeries unrelated to COVID-19. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
MAP: Governor expands restrictions on elective surgeries to more than 100 Texas counties

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott expanded the restrictions that initially required only hospitals in Bexar, Dallas, Harris, and Travis counties to postpone all non-medically necessary surgeries and procedures that are unrelated to COVID-19.

In compliance with Gov. Greg Abbott's July 2 executive order, the University Interscholastic League is requiring the use of facial coverings when practical to do so for all summer activity participants, among other guidelines. (Graphic by Ronald Winters/Community Impact Newspaper)
UIL releases guidelines for conducting summer activities during COVID-19 pandemic

The University Interscholastic League released udpated guidelines for schools conducting summer activities such as sports training and marching band practices on July 8.