— From Staff Reports
Weatherford ISD Board members were pleased to hear Thursday the district has again received a “clean, unqualified opinion” from its recent financial audit by Snow Garrett Williams.
During Thursday’s board of trustees meting, Gary Snow, a partner in the Snow Garrett Williams accounting firm, said the district posted a 100 percent score on its Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST) rating.
“A few years ago, the district’s fund balance was below the state’s recommendation of about three months of working capital,” Snow said. “But now, Weatherford ISD has about three and a half months of working capital, and I commend the board and school administrators for getting this fund balance back on track.”
The Wright stuff
Wright Elementary Principal Joy Bailey provided a campus report on the many “wonderful” things happening at her school.
“Some of our foundations for continuous improvement have been implementing the ‘Capturing Kids’ Hearts’ initiative as well as practicing the elements of ‘The Fundamental 5,’” Bailey said. “Also, ‘Crossing the Line’ has played an integral part in student learning so far this school year.”
Bailey said Wright Elementary has 642 students with a diverse population. The campus also serves as a regional day school for the deaf (Deaf Ed program) where students throughout the Parker County area come to learn.
Bailey also bragged on the members of the Wright Flight Crew, a group of fifth and sixth grade students who provide leadership for the entire student body.
“Just before the holiday break, our Flight Crew members packaged over 12,000 meals as part of the Kids Against Hunger campaign,” Bailey said. “They continue to do marvelous things for both our school and the community.”
In other action, Weatherford ISD Executive Director of Human Resources Richard Crosby provided a Work System Review over his department.
Crosby said the district currently has 938 employees (492 teachers, 89 professional support staff, 109 educational aides, 31 campus administrators, seven central office administrators, and 210 auxiliary staff).
“Our teachers are 100 percent highly qualified,” he added, “which is where the state wants us to be.”
Crosby also shared recent survey result data that indicated an 86-percent approval rating by WISD staff members.
“The drop in employee satisfaction was most likely due to employees’ responses concerning salaries and benefits by some employee groups,” he added.
Crosby also mentioned the Alternative Teacher Appraisal Program that his department began piloting last school year.
“We made some corrections and brought in three additional campuses to the pilot program this year,” he said. “Hopefully, once we work out all the bugs, we will be able to roll out the program to the entire District in about two years.”
Paula Mower, WISD’s Director of Assessment and Organizational Development, provided a review of the District’s Academic Excellence Indicator System report for 2011-12, followed by a public hearing by the board.
Mower said the report includes district and campus student performance information, attendance rates, dropout rates, completion rates, college readiness indicators, and an annual performance on school safety.
“This year’s report did not include district or campus accountability information because of the state’s switch to the new STAAR testing system,” Mower said.
The AEIS report may be viewed on the district’s website or at any school library. Also, hard copies are available at both the district Services Building or at the Weatherford Public Library.
Other items approved at Thursday’s meeting included:
• Revisions to Board Policy DH (Local). This policy outlines employee standards of conduct as well as an employee’s responsibility to notify his or her principal or immediate supervisor within three calendar days of any arrest, indictment, conviction, no contest or guilty plea, or other adjudication of the employee for any felony, any offense involving moral turpitude, and any other offense outlined within the policy.
• Approval of the district calendar for the 2013-14 school year.
• Resolution to defer the 15 percent provision of the new State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) Program.
• Resolution to prioritize what the board believes to be the most important legislative issues regarding public education in the 83rd Texas Legislative session.
Retirements – Ellen Mask, first grade teacher at Curtis Elementary; Suzanne Maulsby, English teacher at WHS; Thomas Stevenson, alternative teacher at WHS; and Amy Williams, sixth grade teacher at Ikard Elementary.
Resignations – Lura Manley, librarian at Austin Elementary; Cheryl Morton, science teacher at WHS; and Robin Seglem, fourth grade teacher at Curtis Elementary.
Employment – Tanya Lyon, fourth grade teacher at Curtis Elementary; and Matthew Williams, physical education teacher.