December 14, 2016

Todd Marshall
Director of Communications,
Marketing and Development
903.794.3651 ext. 1013

December Board of Trustees Meeting for TISD brings Approval for Auto-Injector Treatment and District of Innovation

Texarkana, TX – A short December 13, 2016 meeting of the Texarkana Independent School District featured two key items for approval.

First up, was the approval to amend policy FFAC (Local) authorizing school personnel, who have been adequately trained, to administer an epinephrine auto-injector to a student or staff who is reasonably believed to be experiencing an anaphylactic reaction.

On May 28, 2015, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 66 into law which would encourage schools to have unassigned epinephrine auto-injectors available on public school campuses, as well as off-campus school events. The bill was renamed the Cameron Espinosa Act, as a tribute to Cameron Espinosa, a middle school student from Corpus Christi who died after having a severe allergic reaction to ant bits during a middle school football game.

“TISD will ensure that for each campus a school personnel member is trained to administer epinephrine, so that at least one trained individual is present on campus during normal business hours,” shared Suzie Harris, Coordinator of Nursing & Health Services. “Our participation in the Mylan EpiPen 4 Schools program helps improve access to epinephrine in the event a person experiences a life-threatening allergic reaction in the school setting.”

Additionally, Trustees approved their District of Innovation Plan and will now submit to the Texas Education Agency.

The District of Innovation concept was passed by the 84th Legislative Session in HB 1842 in 2015 and gives traditional independent school districts most of the flexibilities available to Texas’ open enrollment charter schools.

“We began the process in August 2016 with a Resolution passed by our Board of Trustees,” shared Paul Norton, Superintendent of Schools. “Since that time, we have held a public hearing and appointed our District Quality Improvement Committee (DQIC) to draft a plan. They have met on several occasions, finalized a local plan which they feel is best and tonight we received approval from the Trustees to move forward and present to TEA.”

TISD’s District of Innovation Plan will exempt them from mandates related to school start dates, class size waivers, inter-district transfers, employment contracts and certification.

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