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

State to fine company, give students reprieve after STAAR glitches
 Texas fifth- and eighth-graders affected by two widespread online testing disruptions in as many months won’t have to pass the state standardized test this year to move on to the next grade, the Texas Education Agency announced Thursday. In addition to dropping the testing requirement, the agency will levy $100,000 in penalties on New...

Posted: a day ago

Texas fifth- and eighth-graders affected by two widespread online testing disruptions in as many months won’t have to pass the state standardized test this year to move on to the next grade, the Texas Education Agency announced Thursday. In addition to dropping the testing requirement, the agency will levy $100,000 in penalties on New...
Following STAAR glitches, TEA gives students reprieve, fines company
 Following two high-profile testing disruptions in as many months, the Texas Education Agency won’t penalize certain students who didn’t pass the state standardized test this year. The agency will also ask New Jersey-based Educational Testing Service, which administers the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, to pay...

Posted: a day ago

Following two high-profile testing disruptions in as many months, the Texas Education Agency won’t penalize certain students who didn’t pass the state standardized test this year. The agency will also ask New Jersey-based Educational Testing Service, which administers the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, to pay...
Familiar name, black voters helped Cole win in House District 46
 With name recognition and a push to mobilize African-American and white women working to her advantage, Sheryl Cole narrowly defeated immigration attorney Jose “Chito” Vela III in the Texas House District 46 Democratic runoff Tuesday. Cole, a former Austin City Council member, earned 4,967 votes, or 50.9 percent, on...

Posted: 2 days ago

With name recognition and a push to mobilize African-American and white women working to her advantage, Sheryl Cole narrowly defeated immigration attorney Jose “Chito” Vela III in the Texas House District 46 Democratic runoff Tuesday. Cole, a former Austin City Council member, earned 4,967 votes, or 50.9 percent, on...
Cole, Goodwin, Zwiener win Democratic runoffs in Texas House races
 Former Austin City Council member Sheryl Cole narrowly defeated immigration attorney Jose “Chito” Vela in the Democratic runoff to replace embattled state Rep. Dawnna Dukes Tuesday night. With all precincts reporting, Cole pulled in 4,967 votes, or 50.9 percent, and Vela, earned 4,794 votes, or 49.1 percent. Cole will oppose Republican...

Posted: 3 days ago

Former Austin City Council member Sheryl Cole narrowly defeated immigration attorney Jose “Chito” Vela in the Democratic runoff to replace embattled state Rep. Dawnna Dukes Tuesday night. With all precincts reporting, Cole pulled in 4,967 votes, or 50.9 percent, and Vela, earned 4,794 votes, or 49.1 percent. Cole will oppose Republican...
Erin Zwiener defeats Rebecca Bell-Metereau in House District 45 runoff
 9:30 p.m. update: Writer Erin Zwiener garnered enough election day results Tuesday to defeat Texas State University professor Rebecca Bell-Metereau in the Texas House District 45 Democratic runoff. Bell-Metereau had 2,783 votes, or 48.6 percent, while Zwiener had 2,946, or 51.4 percent of votes. Zwiener’s narrow win means she will face...

Posted: 3 days ago

9:30 p.m. update: Writer Erin Zwiener garnered enough election day results Tuesday to defeat Texas State University professor Rebecca Bell-Metereau in the Texas House District 45 Democratic runoff. Bell-Metereau had 2,783 votes, or 48.6 percent, while Zwiener had 2,946, or 51.4 percent of votes. Zwiener’s narrow win means she will face...
Vikki Goodwin wins Democratic nod in Travis County legislative race
 10:22 p.m. update: With all precincts counted Tuesday night, real estate broker Vikki Goodwin easily defeated retiree association leader Elaina Fowler in the Democratic race in Texas House District 47. Goodwin earned 4,638 votes, or 58 percent, and Fowler got 3,359 votes, or 42 percent. Goodwin will face state Rep. Paul Workman, R-Austin...

Posted: 3 days ago

10:22 p.m. update: With all precincts counted Tuesday night, real estate broker Vikki Goodwin easily defeated retiree association leader Elaina Fowler in the Democratic race in Texas House District 47. Goodwin earned 4,638 votes, or 58 percent, and Fowler got 3,359 votes, or 42 percent. Goodwin will face state Rep. Paul Workman, R-Austin...
Sheryl Cole defeats Chito Vela in HD 46 runoff
 10:28 p.m. update: With all precincts reporting, Sheryl Cole has narrowly clinched the Democratic nomination in Texas House District 46 against Jose “Chito” Vela. Cole, a former Austin City Council member, won 4,967 votes, or 50.9 percent, and Vela, an immigration attorney, garnered 4,794 votes, or 49.1 percent. The overall voter...

Posted: 3 days ago

10:28 p.m. update: With all precincts reporting, Sheryl Cole has narrowly clinched the Democratic nomination in Texas House District 46 against Jose “Chito” Vela. Cole, a former Austin City Council member, won 4,967 votes, or 50.9 percent, and Vela, an immigration attorney, garnered 4,794 votes, or 49.1 percent. The overall voter...
Central Texas schools look to beef up security after Santa Fe shooting
 In the aftermath of the Santa Fe High School shooting last week, Central Texas school officials are reviewing safety plans and working to tighten security, including for upcoming graduation ceremonies. Officials with several area school districts said this week they will continue to conduct drills, including for lockdowns, lockouts and evacuations...

Posted: 3 days ago

In the aftermath of the Santa Fe High School shooting last week, Central Texas school officials are reviewing safety plans and working to tighten security, including for upcoming graduation ceremonies. Officials with several area school districts said this week they will continue to conduct drills, including for lockdowns, lockouts and evacuations...
Expert: Fire alarm at Santa Fe High proves schools need more drills
 Early reports that a student or faculty member pulled a fire alarm to warn people about the shooter at Santa Fe High School drew a quick response on Friday from a national school security expert. It would have been better if the school had followed standard lockdown procedures, said Ken Trump, president of the Cleveland based National School...

Posted: 7 days ago

Early reports that a student or faculty member pulled a fire alarm to warn people about the shooter at Santa Fe High School drew a quick response on Friday from a national school security expert. It would have been better if the school had followed standard lockdown procedures, said Ken Trump, president of the Cleveland based National School...
Austin students show improvement on 2018 STAAR exams
 Austin school district students made gains in this year’s state math and reading assessments in grades 5 and 8, according to preliminary results from the annual STAAR tests. Statewide, students also improved in both fifth- and eighth-grade math, though results were mixed in reading scores. The results were from the first administration...

Posted: 15 days ago

Austin school district students made gains in this year’s state math and reading assessments in grades 5 and 8, according to preliminary results from the annual STAAR tests. Statewide, students also improved in both fifth- and eighth-grade math, though results were mixed in reading scores. The results were from the first administration...
After 7 years, Hays Democrats seek to recapture Texas House seat
 Blanco and Hays counties haven’t seen a Democratic state representative in seven years since state lawmakers redrew House District 45 to favor Republicans. But with state Rep. Jason Isaac, R-Dripping Springs, relinquishing his seat, Erin Zwiener, a children’s book author who lives in Driftwood, and Rebecca Bell-Metereau, a Texas...

Posted: 15 days ago

Blanco and Hays counties haven’t seen a Democratic state representative in seven years since state lawmakers redrew House District 45 to favor Republicans. But with state Rep. Jason Isaac, R-Dripping Springs, relinquishing his seat, Erin Zwiener, a children’s book author who lives in Driftwood, and Rebecca Bell-Metereau, a Texas...