News Roundup: Before A Private Funeral Saturday, Former First Lady Barbara Bush Lies In Public Repose

Our daily look at Texas headlines.

By Becky FogelApril 20, 2018 1:50 pm

The Standard’s news roundup gives you a quick hit of interesting, sometimes irreverent, and breaking news stories from all over the state.

The public will have the chance to pay their respects to former First Lady and First Mother, Barbara Bush, Friday.  Bush died Tuesday, surrounded by family, including her husband, President George H.W. Bush. She was 92.

The public repose begins at 12 p.m., and lasts until midnight at St. Martin’s Church in Houston.

Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo described safety precautions at a Thursday press conference.

“No large bags or backpacks will be permitted, so again, leave your backpacks, large bags, large purses, leave them, secure them, don’t bring them with you. And weapons of any type will not be allowed,” he said.

Bush’s funeral service will be held this Saturday and is invitation only.

A San Antonio charter school is facing criticism after 8th graders were assigned homework that suggested there is a positive side to slavery.

As Texas Public Radio’s Camille Phillips reports, 8th graders at Great Hearts Monte Vista were asked to give – quote – “A Balanced View” of being enslaved by listing pros and cons.

Robert Livar says he and his wife were pretty upset when they saw their son’s assignment.

“That students would be tasked with the mental exercise of having to think of pros when it comes to one human owning another human,” he said. “There-there – how is that even –  I just couldn’t understand what the end result of that could possibly be other than revisionist history and slavery apologists.”

Livar says his son left the positive side of the homework blank. He gives Great Hearts credit for responding quickly after he contacted the school.

 “I’m hoping that actions follow words in this instance and the organization becomes stronger for it,” he said.

Great Hearts Texas Superintendent Aaron Kindel says the assignment was inconsistent with the charter network’s values.

“We’re sincerely sorry that this incident happened. We absolutely agree that it’s unacceptable,” Kindel says.

Kindel says Great Hearts is replacing the history textbook it’s used for 4 years because it has quote: “insensitive language.”

“Frankly, it was just not properly vetted at the time.”

The teacher who assigned the homework has been placed on leave.

U.S. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas is the only Republican to sign a letter from male senators calling for new sexual harassment policies in the U.S. Senate.

All 31 of the senate’s Democratic men signed the letter sent yesterday.

It was addressed to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer.

These male senators were backing an earlier letter from women in the U.S. Senate demanding changes to workplace misconduct rules.