Texas 9th least educated state, has 2nd lowest number of high school diplomas, according to analysis

According to recent analysis by personal finance site WalletHub, Texas has the 2nd lowest percentage of high school diploma holders of any state in the U.S. The only state to have fewer is California.

A school bus makes a stop at 11301 Farrah Lane to drop children off at their stop When a school bus is stopped with its lights flashing, drivers in all lanes must stop unless they are on the other side of a median. AISD law enforcement officials review the violation video and license plate images for approval prior to a citation being issued.  RICARDO B. BRAZZIELL/AMERICAN-STATESMAN RICARDO B. BRAZZIELL/AMERICAN-STATESMAN
RICARDO B. BRAZZIELL/AMERICAN-STATESMAN RICARDO B. BRAZZIELL/AMERICAN-STATESMAN

If that doesn’t sound like great news, here’s more.

As is shown in WalletHub’s “Most and Least Educated States” list, compiled using analysis of measurements like graduation rates and racial and gender gaps in degree attainment, Texas isn’t holding its own when it comes to education is several other areas as well.

Although the state ranked 18th on the “quality of education and attainment gap” sublist, which considered factors like the quality of a state’s public school system and the number of people enrolled in top universities in the state, it came in at No. 42 on the “educational attainment” sublist. This list measured the percentage of adults older than 25 who had a high school, college and graduate degree.

Based on how Texas ranked on both these individual lists, WalletHub ranked the state as the 9th overall least-educated state.

READ: Texas schools and districts got their letter grades from state

What do you remember about school lunch?

Man, school lunches have come a long way from the square pizza slices and tiny milk cartons of our youth. Now, at least in AISD, kids have a vast array of healthy food to choose from. They can even build their own fajita like they were eating at a Chipotle or something.

And that’s all thanks to  Anneliese Tanner, the district’s food services director. She makes it her mission to get kids eating healthy breakfasts and lunches every day. A sample menu from the week of January 4-6 includes lettuce, tomatoes, frittata, choice of tortilla, barbacoa & egg tacos, choice of noodle to go with pasta, and a healthy choice of meats.

Elementary school students in Austin can select which ingredients they’d like while a staff member assembles their salad. All 80 elementary schools in Austin will have salad bars like this by the end of the school year. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman
Elementary school students in Austin can select which ingredients they’d like while a staff member assembles their salad. All 80 elementary schools in Austin will have salad bars like this by the end of the school year. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

“We’re teaching them that salads don’t have to be a side and that vegetables should be the center of the plate,” Tanner told the Statesman.

What do you remember from your school lunch days? We polled our newsroom, and while everyone remembers the square pizza slices (Seriously, they were everywhere. I was a military brat, and I remember eating those for lunch in Alaska), here’s a sampling of some of our recollections of the culinary delights from the cafeterias of our youth:

  • “That burrito they made with the refried beans and government cheese… I’ve never quite been able to replicate it, even with the cheapest Velveeta knockoff. It’s the government cheese…we loved burrito day at my San Antonio high school.” — Debbie Hiott, editor
  • “The only cafeteria food I remember ordering: mini Blue Bell cups in elementary school and pizza day in junior high, the plastic-like, yellowish cheese trapping the sausage beneath its surface. I loved it, and can still taste it.” — Matthew Odam, dining writer
  • “In middle school, I would either bring a peanut butter sandwich or buy pizza in the cafeteria. But on Fridays, I would treat myself to a chocolate milk and a Snickers ice cream bar. And that’s it.” — Eric Webb, social media and engagement editor
  • “The wonder that was tater tots. Tater tot day was the big day at my Catholic grade school, and I was always sad that my mom packed my lunch most days. I wanted the tots.” — Sharon Chapman, features editor
  • “I grew up in Dallas where the school districts served ‘Fiesta Salad’ a couple a times a month – or so. That was my absolute favorite item on the menu. What exact is a Fiesta Salad? A plate of pure yumminess made of a bed of Frito corn chips; white rice; seasoned ground beef; lettuce; tomatoes; shredded cheddar cheese – and if you wanted – a dash of Pace picante sauce to top it off.” — Gissela SantaCruz, Viewpoints digital editor
  • “Pizza always came with a side of corn, and it was perfect for some reason. Not real perfect, but I’m-a-little-kid-this-is-great perfect.” — Cat Vasquez, agate page editor
  • “Chimichanga day: the sweet, sweet processed cheese. Salisbury steak day- double portions available in 6th grade.” — Mark Wilson, breaking news reporter
  • “The worst lunch meal had to be the Salisbury steak, which was always smothered in some sort of gelatin-like sauce and rubbery mushrooms.  On those days I’d most likely have an order of french fries instead.” — Mike Parker, editor for the Round Rock Leader and Pflugerville Pflag
  • “Steak fingers with a roll and gravy.” — Gabrielle Munoz, assistant online editor
  • “Graham crackers and chocolate milk mid-morning snack. To die for.” — Kirk Bohls, sports columnist
  • “If it was chicken nuggets day, I’d get a double order. And in middle school they had this weird rectangular pizza that for some reason was both disgusting and amazing at the same time. I’d definitely get a double order — we called it ‘double lunch’ — if that was being served that day. Chocolate milk was the only choice, and I’d usually get two cartons. Crinkle fries.” — Philip Jankowski, public safety reporter
  • “Every once in a while they served chicken fried steak, but barely passable as that — basically just a leathery cutlet with soggy ‘breading.’ It was not good. (This was 1970s AISD public elementary school.)” — Peter Blackstock, music and entertainment writer
  • “I was the only person (possibly in the history of mankind) who liked chipped beef on toast.” — Emily Quigley, assistant features editor
  • “Lunchroom yeast rolls … mmm. Putting French fries on a hamburger.” — Christian McDonald, online projects and data editor
  • “Once we got to high school, they served taquitos with cheese sauce – but that also meant you could really get them to put queso on everything from fries and burgers to chicken fingers.” — Jackie Stone, audience engagement manager
  • “Sporks. And not being ‘cool’ if you didn’t have the pizza Lunchables or Gushers. Also, meal tickets. And the only fruit-like item was a medley of small chunks of apples, pears and peaches from a can. Bleh.” — Alyssa Vidales, multimedia producer

What about you? Got any fond (or not so fond) memories of your school lunch? Let us know in the comments.

Ted Cruz dunks Deadspin on Twitter

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz doesn’t win ’em all. Or even a lot of ’em.

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 20: US Senator Ted Cruz arrives for the Presidential Inauguration of Donald Trump at the US Capitol on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. Donald J. Trump will become the 45th president of the United States today. (Photo by Saul Loeb - Pool/Getty Images)
US Senator Ted Cruz arrives for the Presidential Inauguration of Donald Trump at the US Capitol on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. Donald J. Trump will become the 45th president of the United States today. (Photo by Saul Loeb – Pool/Getty Images)

He definitely didn’t win that big one a few months back, and considering he once called a hoop a “ring” (let Barack Obama tell you about it below), it’s not the easiest thing to imagine Cruz winning a game of basketball.

But a Twitter run-in with sports news site Deadspin could mean chalking up a win for Team Cruz.

The three-tweet “feud” began when Deadspin sent out a call for photographic proof that Cruz has played basketball before, after it was reported that he started a weekly Senate basketball game in order to improve his relationships with fellow Republican senators.

It took him a day or so, but Cruz eventually responded to the tweet with a joke. And a not half-bad one. You know, considering.

Cruz cashed in on a months-old, months-running gag that he looks strikingly similar to Duke University’s Grayson Allen by tweeting out a picture of the shooting guard and asking, “What do I win?”

Deadspin responded with a tweet that simply instructed Cruz to “Go eat (expletive).”

The site’s bad own-manship didn’t go unnoticed by Twitter users. While the writer behind the photo call, Ashley Feinberg, tweeted out numerous reminders friends had sent her to let her know that she had been “owned by Ted Cruz,” Deadspin readers ruled on who-owned-who and came to the same conclusion.

If Feinberg can’t concede, sounds like there’s only one other way to settle this: on the basketball field.

READ: Trumped nationally, Ted Cruz looks to get his Texas groove back

Rain poncho struggle not first time George W. Bush went viral

In this March 24, 2008 file photo, President Bush hugs a person dressed as the Easter bunny at the start of the annual Easter Egg Roll, overlooking the South Lawn of the White House in Washington. touches before the gatEaster Bunny and more than 14,500 hard-boiled eggs are dyed and waiting. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)
In this March 24, 2008 file photo, President Bush hugs a person dressed as the Easter bunny at the start of the annual Easter Egg Roll, overlooking the South Lawn of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

When former President George W. Bush got tangled in his rain poncho during last week’s inauguration, the Internet was quick to seize on his befuddlement, largely in a good-natured way.

But President Bush has been no stranger to both embarrassment and lighter moments. Though he weathered serious criticism during his eight years in office — on issues ranging from 9/11 to the Iraq War to Hurricane Katrina — his ability to suffer indignities without rancor and keep a focus on humor and humanity are also important to remember.

And who could forget when he expertly dodged not one, but two thrown shoes at a press conference in Iraq?

 

 

It was probably a presidential first, but Bush kept his composure — just as he did when he encountered a locked door after a speech in China:

 

 

President Bush also hasn’t been shy about dancing:

Former President George W. Bush dances with band director Asia Muhaimin as the band plays, during a visit to Warren Easton Charter High School in New Orleans, Friday, Aug. 28, 2015. Bush is in town to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
Former President George W. Bush dances with band director Asia Muhaimin as the band plays, during a visit to Warren Easton Charter High School in New Orleans, Friday, Aug. 28, 2015. Bush is in town to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

And he was quick to mug for the kids:

Former President George W. Bush greets 3-year-old Sasha Poteat during a book signing event for "Decision Points" at the Barnes & Noble bookstore in the River Oaks shopping center on Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2010, in Houston. (AP Photo/Houston Chronicle, Julio Cortez)
Former President George W. Bush greets 3-year-old Sasha Poteat during a book signing event for “Decision Points” at the Barnes & Noble bookstore in the River Oaks shopping center on Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2010, in Houston. (AP Photo/Houston Chronicle, Julio Cortez)

As president, he supported our athletes at the Olympics in China — careful, there, Mr. President!

President Bush gestures toward the back of Misty May Treanor as he visits the practice of the U.S. beach volleyball team the 2008 Summer Olympic games in Beijing, China Saturday, Aug. 9, 2008. At right is Treanor's teammate Kerri Walsh. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
President Bush gestures toward the back of Misty May Treanor as he visits the practice of the U.S. beach volleyball team the 2008 Summer Olympic games in Beijing, China Saturday, Aug. 9, 2008. At right is Treanor’s teammate Kerri Walsh. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

And since he left office, President Bush has not been afraid to show his bipartisan side …

First lady Michelle Obama hugs former President George W. Bush during the dedication ceremony for the Smithsonian Museum of African American History and Culture on the National Mall in Washington, Saturday, Sept. 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
First lady Michelle Obama hugs former President George W. Bush during the dedication ceremony for the Smithsonian Museum of African American History and Culture on the National Mall in Washington, Saturday, Sept. 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

East Texas judge deactivates Facebook after calling protesters ‘a million fat women,’ march ‘a hissy fit’

UPDATE: According to the Dallas Morning News, East Texas Judge Bailey Moseley who called protesters who participated in the Women’s March this past weekend “a million fat women” on Facebook, has since said deleting the post was “likely a mistake.” He went on to say that the march was “nothing more than a hissy fit with no defined purpose.”

Following this clarification Moseley deactivated his Facebook account. No word yet on whether or not it was also a mistake.

EARLIER: Judge Bailey Moseley of Texas’ 6th Court of Appeals called the protesters who participated in marches across the country Saturday, which included some 50,000 people in Austin, “a million fat women” in a Facebook post Monday, the Dallas Morning News reports.

Photo by Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman
Photo by Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman

“Just think about this,” the post, which has since been deleted, read, “After just one day in office, Trump managed to achieve something that no one else has been able to do: he got a million fat women out walking.” The post was no longer up Monday afternoon.

The Texarkana judge’s campaign website lauded him for “his strong integrity.”

Find out what people are saying about the Austin Women’s March here.

Follow live: School choice rally at Texas Capitol today

Follow our live coverage out of the rally concerning school choice, an umbrella term for alternatives that allow state money to support privately-run schools, happening today.

5/21/10 Ralph Barrera/AMERICAN-STATESMAN; The Star that adorns the ceiling dome inside the rotunda of the Texas State Capitol. TIA10 TIA Centex
5/21/10 Ralph Barrera/AMERICAN-STATESMAN; The Star that adorns the ceiling dome inside the rotunda of the Texas State Capitol.

The American-Statesman’s Julie Chang is at a pro-voucher rally at the Texas Capitol where Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Gov. Greg Abbott are expected to speak.

How much time did the Austin City Council spend in late-night meetings last year?

Mayor Steve Adler wants to institute a hard and fast rule for City Council meetings: they have to be done by 11 p.m.

adlermeeting

That’s because, according to an American-Statesman review, more than half of Austin’s regular voting City Council meetings, which start at 10 a.m., ran past 7 p.m. last year and six ran past midnight. That’s longer than San Antonio, Dallas and Houston.

And once the Council went past 10 p.m., they spent a grand total of 14 hours and 51 minutes of time in City Council meetings past 10 p.m. in 2016.

That got us thinking: What else could you do in 15 hours?

Here are some possibilities:

The council is expected to consider Mayor Adler’s meeting suggestions Tuesday.

Bridget Grumet and Elizabeth Findell contributed to this blog post.

Austin Women’s March: Experience the march in 360-degree video

More than 30,000 were expected to take part as the Women’s March began in Austin on Saturday, but according to police, the actual crowds reached up to 50,000. The American-Statesman’s Taylor Goldenstein reported:

“Even as the front of the group settled at the Capitol for speeches around 1 p.m., two hours later there were still thousands of people walking the streets of downtown.”

More coverage: Police: Up to 50,000 attend Women’s March in Austin

To experience what it was like to be among the crowd, watch an interactive, 360-degree video of the Women’s March, shot by American-Statesman multimedia journalist Tina Phan, below.

Photos: Austin Women’s March, 01.21.17

(Photo by Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman)
(Photo by Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman)

George W. Bush fights with rain poncho at inauguration, strikes internet gold

When it rains, it pours. This adage applies to both weather and viral photos of former U.S. presidents.

Former US President George W. Bush leaves after the Presidential Inauguration at the US Capitol on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. Donald J. Trump became the 45th president of the United States today. (Photo by Saul Loeb - Pool/Getty Images)
Former US President George W. Bush leaves after the Presidential Inauguration at the US Capitol on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. Donald J. Trump became the 45th president of the United States today. (Photo by Saul Loeb – Pool/Getty Images)

During Friday’s inauguration ceremony in Washington, D.C., former U.S. President (and Texas Gov.) George W. Bush stole the show from President Donald Trump for a brief, befuddled moment. It seems Bush got himself tangled in his rain poncho as he sat in the audience.

RELATED: Barack Obama sends his first tweet as a former president

If there’s one place you should avoid if you want to dodge photographers eager to capture your embarrassing moments, it’s the presidential inauguration.

The internet had reactions. Like … the entire internet.

https://twitter.com/kashanacauley/status/822529947784843264

MORE: Comparing Trump, Obama inauguration attendance in photos

On a day rife with political polarization, it’s nice to know that the relatable struggle of man versus rain-proof garment can unite us all.

Barack Obama sends his first tweet as a former president

Donald Trump is the president of the United States, so he gets the @POTUS Twitter handle. But if you were a fan of Barack Obama’s 140 characters, you can still find him on the social media platform.

President Barack Obama shakes hands with President-elect Donald Trump during the Presidential Inauguration at the US Capitol in Washington, Friday, January 20, 2017. (Saul Loeb/Pool Photo via AP)
President Barack Obama shakes hands with President-elect Donald Trump during the Presidential Inauguration at the US Capitol in Washington, Friday, January 20, 2017. (Saul Loeb/Pool Photo via AP)

Just a few hours after Trump assumed the presidential mantle from Obama by taking the oath of office, the former president sent out his first tweet as a man who does not live in a giant white mansion.

“Hi everybody!” Obama tweeted from @BarackObama. “Back to the original handle. Is this thing still on? Michelle and I are off on a quick vacation, then we’ll get back to work.”

Follow live: President Trump participates in inauguration parade

Meanwhile, back on the @POTUS account, there was a cosmetic makeover almost as soon as Trump took office.

The New York Times reported that the changing of the @-handle (that most sacred of inaugural traditions) occurred almost immediately after the swearing-in kicked off. NBC News has reported that the president plans to continue using his @RealDonaldTrump account as his personal mode of social communication.

MORE: Comparing Trump, Obama inauguration attendance in photos

Trump was back on the keyboard quickly.

Also according to the Times:

“Many on Twitter noted that when the @Potus account was unveiled with Mr. Trump’s picture, it bore as its cover photo a stock image that was taken at Mr. Obama’s first inauguration. The photo was quickly changed, to a zoomed-in stock photo of an enormous American flag.”

The first Trump-era tweet from @POTUS? A transcript of his inaugural address.