AUSTIN (KXAN) - The Austin School Board is siding with the community and looking to save the struggling Eastside Memorial High School.
Crowds cheered after the school board's decision Monday night.
District leaders will now take the next step to secure outside help from Johns Hopkins University, but the state education commissioner still has to sign off on the plan.
The district will be trying to negotiate down the high cost of the program as they work to draw up a contract.
The committee charged with the task of picking a partner to avoid closure of the high school had decided on a program run through Johns Hopkins University.
The fifteen parents, teachers, principals and community members who were under a tight timeline believe it is a better fit than the other five finalists.
Committee members laid out the strengths and weaknesses of the Johns Hopkins program in a two-page report . They were impressed by the specific instructional strategies, structure of the school day and the university's ability to start immediately.
The "high cost" of the program is a concern along with the fact there is a lack of data to show how children perform in the long run. The committee also pointed out Johns Hopkins lack of experience in Texas schools, though they did start working in a San Antonio school this school year who is happy with their services.
During a presentation the university delivered to the East Austin community in April, a representative said the program they would put into action at Eastside has been around since 1994. It's been used in more than 55 schools and helped more than 50,000 students nationwide.
The program designed for inner-city urban schools prides itself on developing a family-like atmosphere on campus where the teachers become parent figures and provide personalized instruction.
A man convicted 21 years ago for engaging in ritual child abuse was released Thursday after the DA's office agreed the only physical evidence against him was faulty.
The pastor of the Austin church attended by the teacher who was killed Thursday in Benghazi remembered him as a spiritual friend dedicated to improving the lives of others.
Tom Pauken said on Thursday that he wouldn't file for the GOP primary for governor, explaining that the difficulties of running against the best-funded statewide candidate in the state would be too great.
Winter is invading Texas with a vengeance as snow, sleet and ice are unleashed on much of northern and western sections of the state.
Several organizations on Thursday called for an end to the use of stun guns in schools, saying the incident Cedar Creek High School last month shows the dangers of such devices.
The expected winter weather has delayed initial construction work on MoPac until the rain and cold temperatures pass through.