Melissa B. Taboada

K-12 education reporter

Melissa B. Taboada writes about K-12 public education for the Austin American-Statesman. She has worked for the newspaper since 1999, previously covering suburban and county government, child welfare issues and the housing market, as well as writing a family life column for several years. Melissa studied journalism at the University of North Texas and graduated from the University of Texas at Austin. She lives in Cedar Park with her husband and their two sons.

Latest from Melissa B. Taboada

Pflugerville, Round Rock ISDs lift college readiness rates

Posted: 52 minutes ago

Just over 41 percent of Central Texas high school graduates are ready for college, a double-digit decline from two years ago. Schools in nine Austin-area districts, including Pflugerville and Round Rock, fared slightly better than the statewide average; only 39 percent of Texas graduates in 2016 were ready for college, according to the latest...
Austin school district chooses buyers for high-profile properties
 Austin school leaders are moving forward with the sales of the district’s downtown headquarters, the Baker Center and the Millett Opera House (home of the Austin Club), among other surplus properties. The school board next Monday is scheduled to vote on the sales of these properties: • The Carruth Center, the 2.7-acre district...

Posted: 7 hours ago

Austin school leaders are moving forward with the sales of the district’s downtown headquarters, the Baker Center and the Millett Opera House (home of the Austin Club), among other surplus properties. The school board next Monday is scheduled to vote on the sales of these properties: • The Carruth Center, the 2.7-acre district...
AISD moves to sell headquarters to developer, Baker Center to Alamo Drafthouse
 Austin school leaders are moving forward with the high-profile sales of district headquarters, the Baker Center and the Millett Opera House (home of the Austin Club), among other surplus properties. The school board on Nov. 27 is scheduled to vote on the sales of the following properties: • the Carruth Center, the 2.7 acre district...

Posted: 12 hours ago

Austin school leaders are moving forward with the high-profile sales of district headquarters, the Baker Center and the Millett Opera House (home of the Austin Club), among other surplus properties. The school board on Nov. 27 is scheduled to vote on the sales of the following properties: • the Carruth Center, the 2.7 acre district...
Campaign cash, outreach to parents fueled big Austin school bond win
 Even staunch supporters of the Austin school district’s $1.1 billion bond were surprised when it passed with 72 percent of the vote on Nov. 7. The single, all-or-nothing proposition was the largest ever approved by Austin residents, even as angst grows over ever-escalating property taxes. Those who lobbied for it stuck to...

Posted: a day ago

Even staunch supporters of the Austin school district’s $1.1 billion bond were surprised when it passed with 72 percent of the vote on Nov. 7. The single, all-or-nothing proposition was the largest ever approved by Austin residents, even as angst grows over ever-escalating property taxes. Those who lobbied for it stuck to...
Teacher accused of telling student ‘go back to Mexico’ is put on leave
 About 120 parents Friday morning packed the library at Fulmore Middle School, seeking answers days after a protest in which students accused a teacher of telling a student to “go back to Mexico.” At the parent meeting Friday, parents pushed for details on what actions the district had taken against the teacher, some calling...

Posted: 3 days ago

About 120 parents Friday morning packed the library at Fulmore Middle School, seeking answers days after a protest in which students accused a teacher of telling a student to “go back to Mexico.” At the parent meeting Friday, parents pushed for details on what actions the district had taken against the teacher, some calling...
Missing sisters found safe, but questions about case’s handling remain
 As the welcome news came Thursday that three missing Austin-area sisters had been found safe in Florida, questions remained about how long it took school officials to learn one child was missing and why authorities didn’t send out a statewide Amber Alert. Two of the sisters had been in foster care since Nov. 3, when authorities learned...

Posted: 4 days ago

As the welcome news came Thursday that three missing Austin-area sisters had been found safe in Florida, questions remained about how long it took school officials to learn one child was missing and why authorities didn’t send out a statewide Amber Alert. Two of the sisters had been in foster care since Nov. 3, when authorities learned...
Hays school board chooses Eric Wright as next district leader
 The Hays school board has tapped Fredricksburg’s Superintendent Eric Wright to lead the district. Hays trustees on Wednesday night named Wright lone finalist over the 19,860-student district. State law requires a 21-day waiting period before the board can offer him a contract. “This is a dynamic time for our district and we have...

Posted: 4 days ago

The Hays school board has tapped Fredricksburg’s Superintendent Eric Wright to lead the district. Hays trustees on Wednesday night named Wright lone finalist over the 19,860-student district. State law requires a 21-day waiting period before the board can offer him a contract. “This is a dynamic time for our district and we have...
Austin students protest, accuse teacher of saying ‘go back to Mexico’
 At least 60 students walked out of a South Austin middle school and circled the school building Wednesday afternoon in protest of a teacher’s culturally insensitive comments to a student, according to students and school officials. Several Fulmore Middle School students who participated in the walkout Wednesday told the American-Statesman...

Posted: 5 days ago

At least 60 students walked out of a South Austin middle school and circled the school building Wednesday afternoon in protest of a teacher’s culturally insensitive comments to a student, according to students and school officials. Several Fulmore Middle School students who participated in the walkout Wednesday told the American-Statesman...
Hays CISD names Fredericksburg’s Eric Wright as superintendent finalist
 The Hays school board Wednesday night tapped Fredricksburg’s Superintendent Eric Wright to lead the district. Trustees named Wright lone finalist over the 19,860-student district. State law requires a 21-day waiting period before the board can offer him a contract. “This is a dynamic time for our district and we have found a leader...

Posted: 5 days ago

The Hays school board Wednesday night tapped Fredricksburg’s Superintendent Eric Wright to lead the district. Trustees named Wright lone finalist over the 19,860-student district. State law requires a 21-day waiting period before the board can offer him a contract. “This is a dynamic time for our district and we have found a leader...
AISD to change Confederate school names, even if community disagrees
 Austin school district leaders will move ahead to rename five Austin campuses with ties to the Confederacy, even if some school communities push back against the decision. School Superintendent Paul Cruz told trustees Monday night that while it is early in the process, the district’s intent is to rename the schools. Input from...

Posted: 7 days ago

Austin school district leaders will move ahead to rename five Austin campuses with ties to the Confederacy, even if some school communities push back against the decision. School Superintendent Paul Cruz told trustees Monday night that while it is early in the process, the district’s intent is to rename the schools. Input from...
Coalition of Austin-area schools lifts college readiness rates
 Just over 41 percent of Central Texas high school graduates are ready for college, a double-digit decline from two years ago. Schools in nine Austin-area districts fared slightly better than the statewide average; only 39 percent of Texas graduates in 2016 were ready for college, according to the latest data available from the Texas Education...

Posted: 7 days ago

Just over 41 percent of Central Texas high school graduates are ready for college, a double-digit decline from two years ago. Schools in nine Austin-area districts fared slightly better than the statewide average; only 39 percent of Texas graduates in 2016 were ready for college, according to the latest data available from the Texas Education...