Dallas ISD Magnet & Public Choice Schools Accepting Applications

magnet_headerDallas ISD has some of the best magnet school programs in the state and nation.  More than Townview and Booker T. Washington, several other high schools have added exciting magnet programs that have similar career explorations and preparations.

Now is the time to apply for admission for the next school year; 2017-2018.  Several magnet programs have a unique selection process that is simple, yet coveted.  There are a few slots available.  Review the application timeline.  Applications must be received by the established deadline; January 31, 2017. Learn more about Magnet Schools here.


According the Dallas ISD website, “Public school choice programs offer specialized academic programming, similar to magnet schools. Transformation schools are one of the new school choice categories that taps into students’ individual interests, learning styles, and aspirations. These schools do not have academic entry requirements – they are open enrollment for students across the district.”  Selection into any Transformation School for the 2017-2018 school year requires a completed application submitted by January 31, 2017.  Learn more about Public School Choice here.

Note: The parent or legal guardian is responsible for submitting the application by January 31, 2017.

Choose Dallas ISD as your first choice for a great education from one of our outstanding magnet program or public school choice.

Happy New Year 2017!

As we start the New Year 2017, I reflect on the successes of 2016, and pause to thank you for your part in the accomplishments we have achieved in Dallas ISD.  In a cooperative and collaborative manner, success is more achievable.

The New Year 2017 will bring opportunities for new ideas and hopes for us to build our lives from good to better, and better to best.  Along with all the new hopes and promises that the new year will bring, I hope it also brings us many more opportunities to work together for Dallas ISD.

Continued success will come in this New Year to those who are prepared for it.  Let’s keep moving forward, and always having the courage to meet new challenges.  Triumph over our vices and embrace our virtues.

I wish many successes for you in the New Year 2017 as you achieve goals you have set.  I predict even more successes for Dallas ISD.

In the New Year 2017, hold on to new hopes, prepare for new plans, entertain new efforts, feast on new feelings, count on new commitments, aspire as you aim, develop your dreams, and believe Dallas ISD students and educators will achieve.

I am proud to represent District 5 on the Dallas ISD Board of Trustees.  Our best is yet to come! Happy New Year 2017!

Holiday Gifts of Love, Joy, Peace, and Happiness

Christmas is one of my favorite holidays. As a child, I looked forward to the gifts that Santa Claus would bring, separate from the gifts I expected from my parents.  During my teenage years, I began to think about gifts I would give to others.  As a parent, I became the giver of gifts for my children, Lew, Jr., Dorsha, and Clinton.  And now, I am a grandfather of Emma, Zoe, Elle, and Erin, reliving the joys of children’s laughter at the thought of Christmas gifts.  It is one of my greatest gifts of all.  But, there is still a greater gift.

I enjoy Christmas so much because of the giving spirit it brings.  People give to those who do not have much at all.  Even those who don’t have much are giving what they can, to spread good cheer to others who are even less fortunate.  You may recall a story of another gift giver, who appeared to not have very much.

Many of our students in Dallas ISD will have a wonderful Christmas holiday because of their parents, families, friends, and generous supporters of education.  May they have a very merry holiday season.  I want to thank Dallas ISD employees for their caring spirits, dedication, and commitment to our children.  I hope their hearts are filled with good cheer this season.  May they remember the real reason for this season; the greatest gift giver.

When people ask what I want for Christmas, my simple response is that I want love, joy, peace, and happiness.  It is based on a bible passage, Luke 2:10-14; And the angel said unto the shepherds, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.  And this shall be a sign unto you.  Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.”  And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

And so to you, I hope you will feel the spirit of the best gift of all.  May you give and receive lots of love, joy, peace, and happiness.

Merry Christmas!

Veterans Day: A Celebration of Service

The elevenDr. Lew Blackburn-HeadShotth hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, in 1918, known as “Armistice Day” signaled the end of World War I, the war to end all wars.  Since then, Veterans Day has been observed in the United States of America on November 11 starting at 11:00 a.m. to honor military veterans who served in the United States Armed Forces.  We celebrate their service.

On November 11 starting at 11:00 a.m., many parades will begin, with valiant veterans serving as Grand Marshall.  As if they were leading their comrades into battle, or returning victoriously, veterans will lead the way.  We celebrate their service.

The eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month is a federal holiday to boast of the brave who willed the wounded while fighting for freedom.  At 11:00 on November 11.  We pause.  We celebrate their service.

To the veterans of the Unites States of America in my family, your family, and our family, let’s celebrate their service.

Voting Matters!

Dr. Lew Blackburn-HeadShotOn Tuesday, November 8, voters will be casting their ballots to elect not only a president, but local, state, and national officials.  Every vote matters!

I voted early, along with more than 500,000 others in Dallas County.  My vote matters!

If you have not voted, the polls open at 7:00 AM-7:00 PM, Tuesday, November 8.  Your vote matters!  Encourage your co-workers, friends, and family members to vote. Their vote matters!

To find your Election Day polling place, click here.  For your sample ballot, click here.

Dr. Lew Blackburn


Dallas ISD Trustee Dr. Lew Blackburn Remembering September 11, 2001

9-11-september-11-2001-32144989-1024-768Below, are comments I made to students during a program about the attack on Tuesday morning, September 11, 2001

Clara Oliver Elementary School, Memorial Service, Friday, September 21, 2001


Good afternoon students and staff. I am Lew Blackburn, Trustee for District 5 of the Dallas Independent School District. I represent parts of West Dallas and South Oak Cliff; I represent this neighborhood and this school. I am proud of you for taking time to remember the victims of the tragedy from last week. Thank you for inviting me.


America was attacked Tuesday, September 11. Terrorist flew two airline jets into the two World Trade Center towers. Another jet was flown into the Pentagon. Yet another jet in route to another target, crashed in Pennsylvania. Although the attacks happened many miles away, we all feel like we have been attacked.

America watched in disbelief. We were alarmed, frightened, and angry. Who could do such a horrible thing? While fingers are pointing to blame, Americans are grieving for the victims. The world has joined in our grief.

Many adults are doing many things to help with the tragedy. Most of them have never experienced this type of tragedy. But they want to do something to help, even though they may be thousands of miles away. What can children do to help? How can the students of Clara Oliver help with a tragedy so many miles away?


You can send letters to other children in the New York, Washington DC, and Pennsylvania areas. Find a school that you want to adopt as pen pals. Tell them that you are concerned for them. Tell them that you are praying for them. Tell them that they have a new friend in you.

Send letters to the firemen, policemen, and other emergency workers who are still working hard to find possible survivors. Let them know that you are proud of them. Let them know that they are positive role models.

What else can you do? Children who have lost their parents in the New York and Washington DC areas need help. Raise money for the Red Cross Relief Fund. Ask that the money be used for the children who lost their parents in the tragedy.


Lately, you have seen many flags around our city. The flag symbolizes our freedom, and our unity. The red and white strips represent the original 13 states of our nation. The blue background represents new constellations for our nation to explore. The white stars represent our 50 united states.

You have learned the pledge of allegiance. It states our commitment to our nation, and our commitment to each other. I pledge allegiance to the flag of the Unites States of America, the greatest country in the world . . . and to the Republic for which it stands, a democracy that is envied by many people around the world. One nation, with 50 states, under God, the almighty provider, indivisible, we will not fall under adversity, with liberty and justice for all. We are 50 states, but one nation that practices and promotes freedom for everyone.


All across the nation, people are praying. They are praying for the victims, the mourners, the emergency workers, and others who are helping. And they are praying for America. Long ago, a prayer was made into a song:

God bless America,

Land that I love.

Stand beside her, and guide her

Through the night with a light from above.

From the mountains, to the prairies, to the oceans white with foam.

God bless America, my home sweet home; our home sweet home.


No matter what you do, remember. Don’t forget what has happened. Remember New York. Remember Washington DC. Remember Pennsylvania. We shall not forget the World Trade Center Towers. We shall not forget the Pentagon. We shall not forget Pennsylvania. We have been wounded, but we are stronger. We are still united, indivisible under God.


I want to close my remarks with a poem I received from a friend. I think it symbolizes our emotions.


As the soot and dirt and ash rained down,

We became one color.

As we carried each other down the stairs of the burning building

We became one class.

As we lit candles of waiting and hope

We became one generation.

As the firefighters and police officers fought their way into the inferno

We became one gender.

As we fell to our knees in prayer for strength,

We became one faith.

As we whispered or shouted words of encouragement,

We spoke one language.

As we gave our blood in lines a mile long,

We became one body.

As we mourned together the great loss,

We became one family.

As we cried tears of grief and loss,

We became one soul.

As we retell with pride of the sacrifice of heroes,

We become one people.

We are: One color; One class; One generation; One gender

One faith; One language; One body; One family; One soul; We are One people


We are The Power of One. We are United. We are America. WE ARE THE USA!

Celebrating Independence

In the United States, we refer to the 4th of July is referred to as our Independence Day.  A federal holiday, it commemorates the Declaration of Independence, adopted by the Continental Congress, on July 4, 1776, thereby declaring that the thirteen American colonies was a new nation, the United States of America.  No longer would the colonials under the British empire control.

We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. – Thomas Jefferson

I thank those who fought for freedom!

As a presidential proclamation and executive order, the Emancipation Proclamation was issued by President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863.  It effectively freed more than 3 million enslaved people in the South.  Eventually it liberated all of the slaves.  The announcement was made in Texas on June 19, 1865, commonly referred to as Juneteenth, or Freedom Day.  No longer would Negros be under the slave owners’ control.

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. – Abraham Lincoln

I thank those who fought for freedom!

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an American immigration policy, started by the Obama administration in June 2012, allows certain illegal and undocumented immigrants to receive a renewable two-year work permit and exemption from deportation.  While DACA confers non-immigrant legal status, it does not provide a path to United States of America citizenship.  In the spirit of African American playwright, Lorraine Hansberry, how much longer will this be a DREAM (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) deferred?

My fellow Americans, we are and always will be a nation of immigrants.  We were strangers once, too.  What makes us Americans is our shared commitment to an ideal, that all of us are created equal, and all of us have the chance to make our lives what we will. – Barack Obama

I thank those who are fighting for freedom!

American Flag Wave

“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

Dr. Lew Blackburn Wins Again!

District 5 Residents,

I am grateful to the voters for taking time to vote during the Dallas ISD, District 5 school board election Saturday May 7. You exercised your right to vote for a representative to work harder for the education of our children; our future. I am humbled that of the 2,320 votes casted, we received 1,197; 51.59%.

I look forward to the next three years representing you in District 5. We have more work to do to make our schools better for our children. Together we WILL achieve academic excellence for ALL of Dallas ISD.

In the coming weeks, I will be asking residents to serve on the District 5 Leadership Council to help re-image our schools. I envision having representatives from all areas of District 5; Wilmer, Hutchins, South Oak Cliff, Roosevelt, Oak Lawn, Downtown/Uptown, and West Dallas.  Let’s work together.

If you are interested, contact me at Lew@LewBlackburn.Com.

Thank You!

LewBlackburn SignB

Lew Blackburn, Ph.D.
Trustee, Dallas ISD

Dr. Lew Blackburn Produces Results

FullSizeRender_3 (2)I understand the need and interest of the citizens and students in District 5 of Dallas Independent School District.  I actively fought for the needs and interest of citizens and students in District 5 to assure that District 5 receives our fair share of the $1.6 Billion Dallas ISD school bond.

As a result of your help and my persistent work and perseverance, new schools will be built in District 5:

  1. Wilmer Elementary School in Wilmer, TX;
  2. Pinkston High School in West Dallas;
  3. West Dallas Preparatory Academy (grades PreK-8); and
  4. Barack Obama Male Leadership Academy in Oak Cliff.

Recent accomplishments I have made for District 5 include:

  1. Reopened W. Harllee Elementary School as an Early Childhood Center;
  2. Reorganized four low-performing schools to meet the academic and social needs of the students; and
  3. Supported programs to assure top quality administrators and educators for students in District 5.

As District 5 Trustee, I want to continue fighting and actively working to accomplish even more benefits for the citizens and students in District 5 of Dallas Independent School District.  My future goals as your District 5 Trustee are:

  1. Improve the accountability ratings of District 5 schools;
  2. Close the academic achievement gap for African-American students in District 5;
  3. Increase career and technology options for students in District 5;
  4. Improve District 5 school buildings and facilities for students; and
  5. Make the teacher evaluation system fair for all teachers.

I ask for your vote and support for my election as District 5 Trustee of Dallas Independent School District on Saturday, May 7, 2016.  Early voting is from April 25, 2016-May 3, 2016.

I also ask for your financial contribution to my campaign.  Click here to contribute online or mail contributions to:

Lew Blackburn Campaign

P.O. Box 398166

Dallas, Texas 75339-8166

If you have any questions regarding my campaign, please contact me at 214-232-6380, or  Lew@LewBlackburn.Com.

Dr. Lew Blackburn Campaign

Dr. Lew BlackburnI serve on the Dallas ISD Board of Trustees representing District 5, including portions of Southeast Oak Cliff, Oak Lawn, West Dallas, City of Hutchins, and City of Wilmer.  District 5 constituents have encouraged me to run for reelection to the board, continuing to provide leadership towards progress and results for Dallas ISD, District 5, and their neighborhood schools. I accept the call to serve another term.

I have provided responsible and responsive representation.  Constituents have asked for quality education for their children, and equity for their community.  I have listened and continue to work towards a quality education for all children.  I am humbled to serve.

During my recent tenure on the Dallas ISD school board, I have focused on several key areas:

  • Early childhood education
  • Academic Achievement & Social Development
  • Effective teachers and principals
  • Public school choice
  • College/career readiness
  • School facility needs ($1.6 billion bond)
  • Financial foundation

I need your help, to continue the progress we are making.  I am counting on you to continue supporting my efforts, and my campaign for re-election to the Dallas ISD Board of Trustees.  With your personal support and financial assistance, I will continue serving the District 5 communities of Dallas ISD.

You know my passion and commitment to education.  I have emphasized strong effective leadership, instructional and academic excellence, and financial accountability.  As a career educator, with my knowledge, skills, and experience in education, I want to continue providing a positive influence on the education of children in Dallas ISD.

Again, I need your help.  Make a contribution to my campaign, online at LewBlackburn.Com, or by mail to: Lew Blackburn Campaign, P.O. Box 398166, Dallas, Texas 75339-8166

Thank you for all that you have done, and will do, to support me as I campaign for re-election to the Dallas ISD Board of Trustees on May 7, 2016.  If you need additional information, contact me at 214-232-6380 or Lew@LewBlackburn.Com.

I appreciate your support.


LewBlackburn SignB

Lew Blackburn, Ph.D.

Celebrating Academic Excellence!

District 5 Pep Rally Banner

The District 5 Academic Pep Rally was held Saturday, November 21, 2015 from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 a.m. at South Oak Cliff High School, 3601 S. Marsalis Ave., Dallas, TX 75216.

Bands, cheerleaders, steppers, singers, and other student groups performed to pump up excitement about doing welSONY DSCl in school.  The older kids were telling younger kids it’s cool to make good grades.  It’s really exciting to see students cheering together about good grades and academic excellence.

It was ecstatic! 

We gave away prizes.  Students who made “A’s” in core subjects: Math, Science, English/Language Arts and History/Social Studies were eligible to win prizes like gift cards valued from $25 to $100.

It was exciting!

Dr. Lew Blackburn

We accentuated students being SMART: Students Making Academics Real Today! Imagine students from elementary school, middle school, and high school cheering about the good grades they made! You should experience the excitement!

It was SMART!