PRESS RELEASE


November 17, 2020

Tina Veal-Gooch
Director of Public Relations
903.794.3651 ext. 1013

TISD Board of Trustees November 2020 Regular Meeting Covers Annual Audit, Texas High Program of Studies, Maintenance/Construction Funds, Reports on Professional Development Programs and Amendment to Student Handbook

Texarkana, TX – A full agenda was set for the November 17, 2020 regular meeting of the TISD Board of Trustees.

*Approval of Westlawn Elementary School Targeted Improvement Plan. As part of the requirements for the Texas Title One Priority Schools (TTIPS) grant, an annual targeted improvement plan for Westlawn Elementary must be submitted and approved by the Board of Trustees. The plan outlines the continuous improvement activities aligned with the extension of the grant initiatives. The plan will be implemented within the 2020-21 school year. Westlawn Elementary was one of 18 campuses in Texas to receive a TTIPS grant which was made available under Section 1003(g) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) with funds distributed through the Texas Education Agency (TEA). Funding of $5.2 million was granted to Westlawn Elementary beginning the 2016-17 school year through 2020-21;

*Approval of Instructional Materials Adoption Committee. As specified in District administrative guidelines for instructional materials adoption, the Instructional Materials Adoption Committee for 2020-21 was presented. Members include representation of all campuses serving Pre-Kindergarten students. Instructional materials will be adopted for the area of Pre-K System for the 2021-22 school year;

*Approval of the Triennial Evaluation of the School Health Advisory Council (SHAC) Wellness Report Card. TISD has been completing a SHAC Wellness Report Card annually. However, the Texas Department of Agriculture requires the report card to be submitted every three years, as required under the current guidelines;

*Approval of Committed Fund Balance Resolution. From portions of the June 30, 2020 General Fund and Child Nutrition Fund, TISD will assign a fund balance of $8,000,000 to Construction consisting of future repairs, renovations and betterments of school facilities and $1,000,000 for Food Service Construction consisting of future repairs, renovations and betterments of food service facilities;

*Approval of Audit Report for FY 2019-2020. Auditors from the firm of Thomas & Thomas, LLP found no findings on TISD’s accounting procedures and determined that the District continues to maintain sound financial practices. For the 2019-20 fiscal year, TISD ended with a fund balance of $17.3 million, an increase of $548,485 over the previous year. The fund balance at the end of 2019-20 was 23% of expenditures;

*Approval of Texas High School Program of Studies and Course Description Guide for 2021-22. With the addition of 10 new courses, Texas High School students will have a comprehensive academic curriculum that includes 526 courses of which 33 are Advanced Placements courses and 135 Dual Credit Courses. Also available are 18 certifications and 193 courses in career and technology programming;

Reports reviewed:
*Professional Development Update. A review of professional development (PD) programs offered by TISD for the 2020-21 school year was given. All PD programs are designed to support district goals. Learning for teachers and administrators looked very different in August 2020 with staff members participating virtually in preparation to teach students in both a remote learning setting and on-campus. Over 115 virtual learning sessions were provided to over 731 teachers and paraprofessionals. In addition to the online District Professional Development Conference, Texas High School held a campus specific conference with 95 sessions offered to 186 staff members. At present, seven curriculum development projects are in progress to align with the TISD strategic goal of increasing meets and masters grade level performance. Work will begin in January 2021 on the development and enhancement of advanced courses for Pre-AP in grades 6-12;

*Amendment to the 2020-21 TISD Student Handbook regarding fall semester exam exemptions. The amendment specifically addresses Texas Middle School and Texas High School regarding fall semester exam exemptions. The amendment will allow all students a fall exam exemption based on meeting set criteria. The purpose of the amendment to the 2020-21 TISD Student Handbook is multifaceted. The primary purpose is to incentivize all students to engage in the third six weeks of academic performance in order to positively impact their fall semester average. The possibility of exemption will also ease the significant challenges of completing semester exams for remote students, students that are quarantined or could be quarantined during this time.

The next meeting for the TISD Board of Trustees will be Tuesday, December 15, 2020.

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