Julie Chang

State education, social services reporter

Julie Chang writes about the state’s public education system and social services for the Austin American-Statesman. Since joining the newspaper in 2013, she has covered crime and K-12 education. She also previously reported for the Beaumont Enterprise newspaper. Born and raised in Houston, Julie graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with degrees in journalism and Plan II Honors. 

Latest from Julie Chang

Texas teacher groups forging into politics, but are efforts legal?
 Incensed by lawmakers’ recent attempts to divert state money from public education and curtail the power of employee unions, public school teachers could prove to be a formidable force in upcoming Texas elections. “It’s just the hostility shown by a large number of elected officials toward public education,” said Troy...

Posted: 8 days ago

Incensed by lawmakers’ recent attempts to divert state money from public education and curtail the power of employee unions, public school teachers could prove to be a formidable force in upcoming Texas elections. “It’s just the hostility shown by a large number of elected officials toward public education,” said Troy...
Flu rampant in swaths of Texas with 2 more months to go in flu season
 It’s shaping up to be another bad flu season for Texans with dozens of deaths related to the illness already reported and at least two more months of the season to go. Dallas County officials have reported 18 flu deaths — all adults — so far. A 3-year-old who did not receive a flu shot has died in the San Antonio area. Travis...

Posted: 10 days ago

It’s shaping up to be another bad flu season for Texans with dozens of deaths related to the illness already reported and at least two more months of the season to go. Dallas County officials have reported 18 flu deaths — all adults — so far. A 3-year-old who did not receive a flu shot has died in the San Antonio area. Travis...
Another busy flu season in Travis County; 7 deaths reported so far
 Seven people in Travis County have died from the flu since the fall, already more than each of the past two flu seasons. Seventeen people died in Travis County from the illness in 2014-15. With at least two more months of the season to go, state officials are seeing a spike in cases because of a particularly nasty strain of the flu called...

Posted: 11 days ago

Seven people in Travis County have died from the flu since the fall, already more than each of the past two flu seasons. Seventeen people died in Travis County from the illness in 2014-15. With at least two more months of the season to go, state officials are seeing a spike in cases because of a particularly nasty strain of the flu called...
Lt. Gov. Patrick: Trump joins Reagan among best presidents
 Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said in a radio interview  that Donald Trump and Ronald Reagan are the two greatest presidents of his lifetime. Patrick sang Trump’s praises Monday on conservative North Texas-based 660 AM The Answer with Mark Davis. Patrick’s comments come as the president and his staff over the last few days have tried to...

Posted: 11 days ago

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said in a radio interview that Donald Trump and Ronald Reagan are the two greatest presidents of his lifetime. Patrick sang Trump’s praises Monday on conservative North Texas-based 660 AM The Answer with Mark Davis. Patrick’s comments come as the president and his staff over the last few days have tried to...
Replacement of Austin State Hospital part of $300 million state plan
 Texas health officials are planning to replace the aging Austin State Hospital as part of a $300 million endeavor to revamp the state’s crumbling psychiatric hospital system. State and mental health leaders envision a state-of-the-art brain health center that will work with private and public organizations to deliver individualized...

Posted: 12 days ago

Texas health officials are planning to replace the aging Austin State Hospital as part of a $300 million endeavor to revamp the state’s crumbling psychiatric hospital system. State and mental health leaders envision a state-of-the-art brain health center that will work with private and public organizations to deliver individualized...
State to start planning total replacement of Austin State Hospital
 Texas health officials will start plans to replace the aging Austin State Hospital as a part of a $300 million endeavor to revamp the state’s crumbling psychiatric hospital system. The Texas Legislature approved the money this past legislative session to improve the psychiatric hospital system, commonly referred to as state hospitals...

Posted: 12 days ago

Texas health officials will start plans to replace the aging Austin State Hospital as a part of a $300 million endeavor to revamp the state’s crumbling psychiatric hospital system. The Texas Legislature approved the money this past legislative session to improve the psychiatric hospital system, commonly referred to as state hospitals...
Why the number of GED test takers is declining in Texas
 The number of Texans who took GED tests declined by 21 percent from 2012 to 2016, a consequence of the test’s high cost and its difficulty, according to a new study released Monday. More test takers also failed the General Educational Development tests, a battery of exams designed to measure high school equivalency — about 30...

Posted: 13 days ago

The number of Texans who took GED tests declined by 21 percent from 2012 to 2016, a consequence of the test’s high cost and its difficulty, according to a new study released Monday. More test takers also failed the General Educational Development tests, a battery of exams designed to measure high school equivalency — about 30...
9-year-old boy who could only crawl gets electric wheelchair
 Haji Mada, 9, was all smiles as his sister wheeled him out of his East Austin apartment Thursday. He was about to try out his new electric wheelchair and taste freedom he had lost when he stopped walking more than a year ago. “Look at what we’ve got for you,” said Britt Sitzes of National Seating & Mobility, which helped...

Posted: 27 days ago

Haji Mada, 9, was all smiles as his sister wheeled him out of his East Austin apartment Thursday. He was about to try out his new electric wheelchair and taste freedom he had lost when he stopped walking more than a year ago. “Look at what we’ve got for you,” said Britt Sitzes of National Seating & Mobility, which helped...
DPS to lay off 117 officers in light of budget cuts
 Texas Department of Public Safety officials announced Friday they have hired 97 new highway patrol officers even though earlier this week, the state Public Safety Commission approved plans to lay off 117 officers and eliminate an additional 60 positions. First reported Friday by KXAN, the public safety agency by May 31 will eliminate its...

Posted: 29 days ago

Texas Department of Public Safety officials announced Friday they have hired 97 new highway patrol officers even though earlier this week, the state Public Safety Commission approved plans to lay off 117 officers and eliminate an additional 60 positions. First reported Friday by KXAN, the public safety agency by May 31 will eliminate its...
Texas DPS to lay off 117 officers, eliminate another 60 positions
 Texas Department of Public Safety officials announced Friday they have hired 97 new highway patrol officers even though earlier this week, they were approved to layoff 117 officers and eliminate another 60 positions. First reported by KXAN, the public safety agency by May 31 will eliminate the so-called retire/rehire program, which allows...

Posted: 29 days ago

Texas Department of Public Safety officials announced Friday they have hired 97 new highway patrol officers even though earlier this week, they were approved to layoff 117 officers and eliminate another 60 positions. First reported by KXAN, the public safety agency by May 31 will eliminate the so-called retire/rehire program, which allows...
Paxton: Guns are allowed in Texas churches, unless otherwise specified
 Licensed gun owners can bring guns into Texas churches that do not have posted signs prohibiting them, according to an opinion Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton released Thursday. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick had asked Paxton for a clarification of the law this month in the wake of November’s mass shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland...

Posted: 30 days ago

Licensed gun owners can bring guns into Texas churches that do not have posted signs prohibiting them, according to an opinion Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton released Thursday. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick had asked Paxton for a clarification of the law this month in the wake of November’s mass shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland...