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THE INDEPENDENT VOICE FOR PUBLIC EDUCATION IN TEXAS FOR 60 YEARS

January 2014

TSB

1953

2013

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Y E A R S O F P U B L I C AT I O N

The aftermath of CSCOPE Where do we stand and what have we learned?

In the Spotlight Gary VanDeaver New Boston ISD

TASB President Faye Beaulieu Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD


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TSB contents news and features

CSCOPE: Now that the dust has settled, where do we go from here? by Jody Serrano

16 photo feature Texas ASCD members gather in Corpus Christi

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departments

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In the Spotlight New Boston ISD superintendent makes bid for state office

Who’s News

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Ad Index

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by Leila Kalmbach

columns From the Editor

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The Law Dawg  —  Unleashed

7

Tech Toolbox

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by Katie Ford by Jim Walsh

TASB President Profile HEB ISD trustee believes in sharing successes

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by Autumn Rhea Carpenter

by Terry Morawski

Game On!

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The Back Page

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by Bobby Hawthorne by Riney Jordan

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Creating the workforce of tomorrow today An area superintendent shares how districts can manage the new requirements by Royce Avery

The views expressed by columnists and contributing writers do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher or Texas School Business advertisers. The publisher also makes no endorsement of the advertisers or advertisements in this publication. Cover image ©Shutterstock.com January 2014 • Texas School Business

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TEPSA-Legal Digest

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WHAT ELEMENTARY PRINCIPALS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT SPECIAL EDUCATION AND SECTION 504: Jim Walsh, Walsh, Anderson, Gallegos, Green and Treviño, P.C.

DOCUMENTATION: LEGAL ISSUES AND PRACTICAL STRATEGIES: Kevin Lungwitz, The Lungwitz Law Firm, P.C. FIVE LEGAL ISSUES ELEMENTARY PRINCIPALS WILL ENCOUNTER: Haley Turner, Walsh, Anderson, Gallegos, Green and Treviño, P.C.

Texas School Administrators’ Legal Digest and the Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association are pleased to announce the TEPSA-Legal Digest School Law Workshop featuring presentations on legal issues of particular concern to school principals and other campus-level personnel as well as superintendents, school board members, and school attorneys.

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Texas School Business • January 2014


From the Editor Happy new year! I hope you readers out there had a wonderfully relaxing winter break. As we look into the new year, we have plenty of unknowns ahead. Our cover story this month explores the dawning of the TEKS Resource System (formerly CSCOPE) and what it might mean for our smaller, rural districts. We also have a guest column from El Paso ISD Area Superintendent Royce Avery regarding the effects of House Bill 5. Avery talks about his involvement in creating best practices for implementing the new law into current school operations. Speaking of HB 5, our educator in the spotlight this month is New Boston ISD Superintendent Gary VanDeaver, who is running for state representative in House District 1. VanDeaver says he decided to get involved in state politics while watching the Legislature debate and vote on HB 5, which is having a significant impact on school districts across Texas. Also, this month we shine the light on Faye Beaulieu, president of the Texas Association of School Boards. She has been proactive in public education matters as a trustee for 18 years in Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD, and she’s now leading statewide efforts to ensure school boards have the resources they need to support their districts. It all started with her offer to pop popcorn at a PTA meeting, but I’ll let you read the story to find out more. Happy reading! Katie Ford Editorial Director

Mesquite ISD Ralph Poteet High School Tex. Arch. Lic. #10136 Photo Scott Hales

(ISSN 0563-2978 USPS 541-620) January 2014 Volume LX, Issue 4

1601 Rio Grande Street, #455 Austin, Texas 78701 Phone: 512-478-2113 • Fax: 512-495-9955 www.texasschoolbusiness.com Publisher Ted Siff Editor in Chief Jim Walsh Editorial Director Katie Ford Design Phaedra Strecher Columnists Riney Jordan, Terry Morawski, Jim Walsh Advertising Sales Manager Lance Lawhon Director of Marketing and Customer Relations Stephen Markel Office Services Ambrose Austin ISSN 0563-2978 USPS 541-620 Published monthly, except for July/August and November/ December, and for the Best in Class issue published in August and the Bragging Rights issue published in December (12 times a year) by Texas School Business Magazine, LLC, 1601 Rio Grande Street, #455, Austin, TX 78701. Periodical Postage Paid at Austin, Texas and at additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Texas School Business,1601 Rio Grande Street, #455, Austin, TX 78701. SUBSCRIPTION RATES: $28 per year; $52 for two yrs; $72 for three yrs. Group rate: 10 or more, $18; single issues, $4.50.

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The 28th Annual

TCASE - LEGAL DIGEST CONFERENCE ON SPECIAL EDUCATION LAW

ONE CONFERENCE TWO LOCATIONS! Tuesday, April 8, 2014 New Braunfels Tuesday, April 29, 2014 Arlington

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Texas School Administrators’ Legal Digest

Speakers and Topics include: THE YEAR IN REVIEW: TOP SPECIAL EDUCATION DECISIONS OF 2013-2014 Jim Walsh, Walsh, Anderson,Gallegos, Green & Treviño, Austin LEGAL ISSUES & PRACTICAL STRATEGIES IN STUDENT TRANSITION PLANS Janet Horton, Thompson & Horton, Houston LIABILITY & PROACTIVELY AVOIDING IT Paula Maddox Roalson, Walsh, Anderson, Gallegos, Green & Treviño, Houston LEADING EFFECTIVE ARD MEETINGS: INCLUDING THE ROLE OF PARENTS, ADVOCATES, AND REGULAR ED STAFF Holly Wardell, Eichelbaum Wardell, Austin STUDENT DISCIPLINE UPDATE: MDRs, REMOVALS & DAEPs Jose Martín, Richards, Lindsay, & Martín, Austin HERE COMES SECTION 504! Shannan Arbabi, Walsh, Anderson, Gallegos, Green & Treviño, Irving

www.legaldigestevents.com Online Registration for Texas School Administrators' Legal Digest Conferences and Workshops 6

Texas School Business • January 2014


THE LAW DAWG – Unleashed by Jim Walsh

An open letter to Wendy Davis

D

ear Ms. Davis: I have represented public school districts in Texas as an attorney for more than 30 years, and during that time I have gotten to know many school board members, superintendents, principals and teachers. I am dismayed at the direction our state is taking under Republican leadership and am hopeful that your campaign represents a turning of the tide. I have one suggestion. I think it would be very meaningful to educators if you would publicly pledge to appoint as commissioner of education someone who has been a teacher, principal and superintendent in the public schools of Texas. If that person has actually driven the school bus and/or coached a team or extracurricular event, so much the better. There are many qualified people who would fulfill those requirements. It is disrespectful for the governor to put someone in charge of public education who has never filled any of those roles. This is just one sign among many that the Republican leadership at the statewide level does not respect educators and does not properly value public education. We see this in the current governor, who appointed Commissioner Williams, despite his complete lack of experience in the Texas public education system. Michael Williams is a good man. But he never has spent his weekend decorating his classroom, stayed up late at night grading papers or taken a phone call at home from a parent whose child came home from school in tears. Those are just some of the things that teachers do, and Mr. Williams has never been a teacher. Mr. Williams has never appraised a teacher’s performance in the classroom. He has never investigated allegations of bullying. He has never had to fill up his weekly schedule with basketball games,

volleyball games and band concerts, sacrificing time with his family. He has never taken the angry call from the parent whose child has been dismissed from the cheerleading squad. Those are just some of the things that principals do, and Mr. Williams has never been a principal. Mr. Williams has never driven the icy roads in his community at 4:30 in the morning to determine if it is safe for the buses to run. He has never prepared a school budget. He has never been responsible for informing the community of the need for new schools and the money to pay for them. Those are just some of the things that superintendents do, and Mr. Williams has never been a superintendent. There are many elected officials in our state who genuinely do value and support public education, and they come in both of our major political parties. But at the highest level of state office, support for public education comes only in rhetoric, not reality. Greg Abbott’s campaign website lists the issues that he thinks are important. It completely omits public education — the largest budget item in the state budget and the primary constitutional duty of the state he seeks to lead. I’m hoping that you will make genuine support for public education and public educators a cornerstone of your campaign. I suggest that a pledge to appoint as commissioner of education a person with experience in the trenches would go a long way toward demonstrating that support. Good luck in your campaign. JIM WALSH, an attorney with Walsh Anderson Gallegos Green and Treviño P.C., serves as editor in chief of Texas School Business. He can be reached at jwalsh@ wabsa.com. You can also follow him on Twitter: @jwalshtxlawdawg.

The Independent Voice for Public Education in Texas for 60 Years Since 1954, Texas School Business has published the good news for and about Texas educators and the vendors who serve the public schools. Today, Texas School Business is considered an institution among school leaders and decision makers. Each issue includes: • In-depth features on Texas public education • Who’s News • The Law Dawg – Unleashed • Photo features of association events • Educator and administrator profiles • Riney Jordan • Bobby Hawthorne • Terry Morawski • And more…

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Join education’s most energetic and innovative leaders at SXSWedu to connect, collaborate, create and change how we teach and learn. 2013 Keynote: Bill Gates

The Wheeler Brothers at the 2013 Conference & Festival Party

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Thursday’s 2013 Closing BBQ

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Texas School Business • January 2014

2013 Registrants


Tech Toolbox by Terry Morawski

Get untangled in 2014

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t’s January. That means we are in the middle of the school year. It also is the time when, personally and professionally, people talk about new beginnings. The new year is a great time to rethink old problems. For the past few years, I have written my January column about my technology resolutions for the new year. As a new spin on the new year theme, I thought I’d use my first column of the year to write about a process we all struggle with: untangling difficult problems. It is likely that, at some point, you’ve encountered a mess of wires. These balls of frustration often hide behind TV entertainment centers, computer desks and other areas. When you buy a new piece of equipment or have to move, you have to deal with the mess of wires. The following is a simple process to help you untangle your wires and move on.  It’s possible the same process might help you untangle other messes you face. 1. Take a deep breath. You’re not the first person to have to untangle a mess. 2. Skip the blame game. Blaming anyone else for the problem just wastes time and makes everyone upset. Focus on the task at hand. 3. Remind yourself of the end goal you are working toward. (Or, if you are not sure, figure out the end goal before you proceed.) 4. Focus on one wire at a time. It is impossible to track and untangle two wires at once. Also, working on an individual wire gives you focus and you will notice quick progress. Do your best to avoid staring at the entire jumble, as the immensity of the task is likely to frustrate you and make you feel hopeless. 5. Wire by wire, isolate each one and organize. Once all of the individual parts are organized, the picture will be much clearer of which wires need to be part of the new plan and which ones need to be stored, recycled or trashed. 6. Take a minute to admire the work you have done. You are well on your way to a new, untangled future. 7. Develop a new plan, based on your analysis of the individual parts that fit with your overall goal. Don’t fall into your old habits and create a new jumble of wires. Take

your time with this step. 8. Your new plan may require new purchases* or research or involve more people, but that’s all good news, because that means your approach has expanded your thinking on an old problem. *8.5. It can be dangerous to assume a purchase will fix your problem. Also, back to our wiring analogy: Many $1 wires will do the same thing as a $20 wire. A knowledgeable expert will steer you in the right direction. If you do not have one handy, there is a volume of reviews and advice on any given topic online. 9. If you discover a great way to solve a common problem, share your solution with others. In the upcoming year, we have many situations to untangle. Let’s take a look: House Bill 5: This transformative piece of legislation needs time for significant unpacking. It is possible to get stuck in the details as your district attempts to implement a solution. Remember to take a deep breath and consider the individual parts. One-to-one initiatives: Technology belongs in the daily operation of schools. Take your time and be strategic. Most of all, remember that purchasing the technology should be one small part of your one-to-one plan. Career tech: How do you offer high school curriculum that matches the needs of our rapidly evolving student population? What solutions are available from university partners and virtual schools? Career tech questions must be unpacked, untangled and then unpacked and untangled again. I do not believe there is a permanent solution to career tech, nor should there be. So, most of all, do not be frustrated that developing a new plan is part of the regular process. And that’s it. Hopefully this column is helpful as you untangle your next problem. Happy wiring! TERRY MORAWSKI is the assistant superintendent of communications and marketing for Mansfield ISD. Please send all future column ideas, reading suggestions, questions and comments to terrymorawski@ gmail.com or connect with him on Twitter: @terrymorawski.

Keep Current L As all GAS T AS LE E TEX OL school G O S’ DI SCH R O T TRA administrators, INIS ADM board members, and school attorneys know, Now in its school law does 30th year of not stand still. publication Published ten times a year, the Legal Digest provides the latest developments in the law to help administrators stay abreast of this rapidly changing field and avoid litigation. . , L.P tions blica lsh e Pu Plac r: Jim Wa s Park ito Childres Siff d r sher: ing Ed Publi Manag r: Jennife ficer: Te Of Edito erating t.com Op iges gald Chief le w.

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er n” Numb itutio e 27, const the “re from ce. Both an arose case cases perform In one nt Both rs. t. stude er los amine poor ng ex the teach ion of the ari he case, the decis ww l cy. other nera cases, the Agen y Ge both .. office torne by DE . cases, one Atissioner’ss. Here upheld mm cision INSI t nfire gie cour the Co e Bo OK ess de the Ag tock ort 11 from Aggi proc over A LO we rep cisions due tion Coms de Litiga wen v. ort this ation month This on, three ial educ Bo rep t by ec mpse or no ion we Opini ree sp a gli ts. decis whether vereign th vides ps in to hligh — and ste ) pro issue same “so The the hig ge 10 agency es. are n to the cy (pa state of truste ts, but .A. atio en T.E the uc en ard Ed um on Ag which rs of is is ial l ucati the bo of arg in . Th Powe specia Spec xas Ed situation removes a variety rsuasive ruling ee Te v. e r thr ll inary m pe t and with Ross very rar Of ou of you wi of the a prelim distric effort of the school ght this find any t rather y relief. many sting and t al bu to rar a loc board fou did no s case, intere likely tempo ities. urt thi bil al for are co in n nsi loc ts we eral cision motio respo cer presen the fed final de trict’s find” 11) led dis ng offi (page ently fai in not the school heari ert on neys e! Attor ty inadv ’s opini neral on the mor strict Coun General The ge ests And ty Di Tarrant y sted Requ Act). Coun torne reque sed. u of PIA rrant situation. for an At ormation t was In lie es, tha be disclo v. Ta al Inf uest Doe er unusu blic ation of cas wg ely req uest (Pu inform , would Da oth tim an the ke a a PIA req that the therefore . with m is d to ma new along shows nse to h a case blic, an two e po ard cas res Bo lcome be pu this Case in suc to we sting a rule sumed to tions, as hted Intere ge 13) t delig is pre are excep (pa Most tha cy We areory ard for East ISD, ucation isal There Agen Ed ’s Aw Advis pra the Dawg v. North ioner of tive ap dying n at the e the iss stu Hall nistra dge Actio dri We giv nth to the Commthe admi is worth ating the Al e me mo this from tails of so this on for evalu er agreed welco ion de s ion ” he decis of the rare, and bilitie mmiss valid Co ponsi some es are s “in flawed, s l wa ve res hile the sses cas addre s. Such u who ha tors. W r appraisa praisal wa problem proces se of yo administra l, that he h the ap was no d people ug re name by tho ance of a principa Even tho And the rm of un . Hall, r relief s valid. group” perfo . Ms the d l. n wa a “focus with d no fur icklan ). ncipa n pla —Str ordere erventio t’s use of t the pri s ISD (page 18 ou Dalla the int distric ation ab from Dallas ISD the ions inform with decis ussaint v. ther d two to ga To o issue ) and .A. als (page 17 and ses, The T.E s ISD lla of Ca le Da v. ex, Tab r Matte ... Also bject es 8 Su ticl • 200 le of Ar Tab

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“John Kuhn is the heroic Texas educator who said, ‘I will not race to the top. I will stop like the Good samaritan and lift hurting children out of the dirt.’ In Test-and-Punish, Kuhn provides the origins and the antidote to the most serious mistake ever made in education. This clearly written and compelling book has the potential of substantially improving the lives of millions of people now and for generations to come.” —sTephen KraShen, professor emeritus, University of southern California

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Texas School Business • January 2014


GAME ON! by Bobby Hawthorne

Taking the sports talk dudes to grammatical school

I

mostly detest what passes for popular music these days, and I don’t need the political blowhards ramping up my blood pressure, so I’m stuck with the Beatles or a book on CD or intelligent sports talk radio when I can find it, which is almost never. Typically, the sports talk dudes — and they’re all dudes — rehash the obvious and explain how any specific point, game, match, world war, etc., could, should and would have been handled differently if they’d had anything to say about it. Then they recite scores and take phone calls from other dudes who are auditioning for their own sports talk show by talking loudly and fast. This chews up about an hour, so the sports talk dudes are left with two hours of dead air time, which they fill by feigning disgust or delight over something LeBron or Jerry spouted or Antonio Cromartie impregnated or Johnny Manziel signed. Then they talk about themselves. For example, two local sports talk dudes spent what seemed like half the afternoon Googling themselves and pretending to be shocked by what they found. “The haters out there think I’m worse than Hitler,” one — clearly not a history major — gasped. Meanwhile, two others fashioned their “Mount Rushmore of Candy” and invited listeners to chime in as well. “You gotta put Heath Bar up there, dude,” Jeff from Elgin insisted. Darrell from Hutto disagreed. “Snickers, man. Snickers!” Jeff screeched. It was imbecilic beyond imagination, but I wasn’t as offended by what the dudes said as I was how poorly they said it. And I’m not talking about the tender nuances between “which and that” and “further and farther.” I’m talking about a guy with a university degree saying, “Between the two, me and him like Mounds best over Payday.” OMG. Look, you don’t have to be a dunce to make a grammatical gaffe in public. We all do it occasionally. But committing the same seventh grade errors day after day can and will make you sound like one. So, how about this for a New Year’s res-

olution: I resolve to know and appreciate the difference between (or differences among) the following: • Me, Myself and I Tom gave a Snickers to Billy and me (not “to Billy and I”). “Myself” is a reflexive pronoun, as in “I made myself a Snickerdoodle pie.” “Myself” is never a subject, as in “Tom and myself like Snickerdoodle pie.” • Good | Well The Aggie quarterback played well. The Aggies played a good game. Never: The Aggies played good. • Fewer | Less If you can count it by numbers, it’s fewer. If it’s a hypothetical quantity, it’s less. “I have fewer dollars than Tom. I have less money than you.” • Who | That A person is a “who.” A candy bar is a “that.” “I gave a candy bar to Charlie, who gave it to Tom.” • Better | Best Is Almond Joy better than Snickers? Which is best? Almond Joy or Snickers or Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup? • It | they A person is a he or she. A team is an “it.” “Both twirlers dropped their batons.” “The girls’ soccer team will host its annual Spaghetti Dinner Tuesday.” Well, that’s it. Please pass between or among. Encourage your coaches and players and perhaps even your local talk radio dudes to step up to the plate and raise their game — grammatically, that is. Who knows? If they make less mistakes, they might earn a spot on my own personal Mount Rushmore of Grammar. I myself think that would be sweeter than Almond Joy. BOBBY HAWTHORNE is the author of “Longhorn Football” and “Home Field,” both published by The University of Texas Press. In 2005, he retired as director of academics for the University Interscholastic League.

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Texas ASCD members gather in Corpus Christi The Texas Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development hosted its annual conference in Corpus Christi in October. The theme was “Learning Tomorrow … Today.”

Compass Learning’s Tom Anderson chats with Texas ASCD board member David E. Young, Pampa ISD.

Tasha Barker, Lindale ISD (left), presents Jessica Dworaczyk, South San Antonio High School, with the 2012-2013 T.E.A.C.H. Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Classroom.

Discovery Education’s Cindy Moss helps participants construct their own STEM definition and vision.

Keynote Judy Willis presents “Sustaining Student’s Classroom Attention in the Digital Age.”

Board President Carl E. Key (center, with tie) gathers with New Diana ISD staff members.

The recipients of the Texas ASCD Affiliate Awards for Exemplary Performance were (from left to right): Gayle Parenica, Crossroads Area; J. Blanca O. Lopez, Paso del Norte; Nita Keesee, West Central Texas; Silvia Martinez, Sabine-Neches; Larry McHaney, North Central; Pat Armstrong, Panhandle; Elizabeth Clark, Les Evans; and Frank Alfaro, Alamo Area. 12

Texas School Business • January 2014


Corpus Christi Mayor Nelda Martinez welcomes attendees to the Texas ASCD 2013 Annual Conference.

Stephanie Bourgeois, Channelview ISD, accepts her iPad Mini and Embassy Suites gift certificate at the Texas ASCD 2013 Annual Conference Grand Prize Drawing.

Tom Jaggard, ESC Region 2, prepares to present information on HB 5 and other bills passed during the 83rd Texas Legislature.

Texas ASCD Board President Carl E. Key (left) receives recognition from Jim Walsh, Texas School Business editor in chief. From left, Suzie McWilliams, Forney ISD, with the 2013 George H. and Gwyn Bronlee Leadership Award winner, Steve Chapman, H.E.B. ISD; Carl E. Key, New Diana ISD and Dr. Elizabeth Clark, Birdville ISD.

The 2013-2014 Texas ASCD board of directors and regional affiliate presidents: Top row, from left to right: Al Hambrick, Sherman ISD; Janis Jordan, Corpus Christi ISD; Virginia Cotten; Bill Bechtol, Eanes ISD; David Young, Pampa ISD; Suzie McWilliams, Forney ISD; Carl E. Key, New Diana ISD; Abigayle Barton, Corpus Christi ISD; Roy J. Garcia, Jr., Cypress-Fairbanks ISD; Suzanne W. Burke, Austin ISD; J. Blanca O. Lรณpez, Ysleta ISD; and Gena Gardiner, Highland Park ISD. Bottom row, left to right: Yolanda M. Rey, Texas ASCD; Vonita White; Elizabeth Clark, Birdville ISD; Larry McHaney, North Central; Frank Alfaro, Alamo Heights; Pat Armstrong, Panhandle; Marc Aguilera, Corpus Christi ISD; and Tasha Barker, Lindale ISD. Not pictured: Juneria Berges, Maria Luisa Guerra, Hilda Medrano, Mike Waldrip and Lisa Young. January 2014 โ€ข Texas School Business

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Aubrey ISD Aubrey ISD has created its first police department and has hired Jason Massengale as its police chief. Most recently the district’s maintenance director, he is a graduate of the North Central Texas Council of Governments Regional Police Academy in Arlington and holds police, EMS and firefighter certifications. From 2003 to 2005, he was with the Oak Point Police Department. Prior to that, he worked for the Denton County Sheriff’s Office. Massengale recently completed school resource officer training. Austin ISD Athletic Director Tommy Cox has announced his upcoming retirement, effective at the end of June. He has held the position since 2004. Prior to that, he was head football coach at Bowie High School from 1988 to 2001. In addition, he was an assistant coach at South San Antonio ISD and Killeen ISD. His first head coaching job was at his alma mater, Travis High School in Austin, where he played quarterback for the Rebels. Blooming Grove ISD Jimmie Malone, who had been serving as the district’s interim superintendent, is now superintendent. He began his education career as head coach in Aquilla ISD in 1970, going next to Whitney ISD a year later to serve as head coach and athletic director and elementary and high school principal. He took his first superintendent position in 1984 in Kopperl ISD, serving there until 1989, when he transferred to take the top position in S&S CISD. He then was superintendent of Decatur ISD from 1993 until his retirement in 1999, after which he worked in the public sector until coming out of retirement to lead Italy ISD from 2007 to 2011, when he joined Blooming Grove ISD. Malone, who received an associate of arts degree from Hill Junior College, earned his bachelor’s degree in biology and chemistry from Dallas Baptist College and his master’s degree in educational administration from Tarleton State University. Bryan ISD A new principal has been named for The Harris School. He is Leroy Morales, who comes to his new school from Cypress Springs High School, where he was associate principal. An educator for 24 years, 12 of those as a teacher, he also has been summer 14

Texas School Business • January 2014

Who’s News

Leroy Morales

school principal of Cypress Ridge High School and has served in a number of student services and associate principal positions in CypressFairbanks, Klein and Aldine ISDs.

Carroll ISD Stephanie Mangels has been appointed to serve as principal of Carroll Middle School. Now in her 19th year as an educator, she was assistant principal of the campus for the past six years. She was a math teacher for a year at Carroll Middle School and for 11 years in Grapevine-Colleyville and Keller ISDs and at schools in Arizona. Mangels holds a bachelor’s degree in education from Hardin-Simmons University and a master’s degree in education from Texas Tech University. The new director of finance is Christy Stinson, who comes to the district from Lake Worth ISD, where she was executive director for business and support services. She held several other roles in that district as well, including business manager. Prior to that, she worked for Lovington Municipal Schools in New Mexico. Stinson earned her bachelor’s degree in general business and accounting and a master’s degree in management. Clear Creek ISD The district’s trustees have named Scott Bockart assistant superintendent of secondary education. He has been an educator for 24 years, the past six of which have been as principal of Clear Creek Scott Bockart High School. He has been with Clear Creek ISD for 11 years, including working as principal of League City Intermediate School. A graduate of Abilene Christian University with a bachelor’s degree in secondary education, Bockart received his master’s degree in education from St. Thomas University. Copperas Cove ISD Catherine Ryan has been named deputy superintendent for curriculum and instruction. She was most recently superintendent of Fairfield ISD, where she served since 2009. In Rogers ISD, she spent five

years as a classroom teacher, 10 as a principal, and five as the district’s superintendent. Ryan earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary and all-level special education from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, a master’s degree in education administration from Tarleton State University and a doctorate in education administration from Texas A&M University. Cypress-Fairbanks ISD Samir Patel has been appointed to serve as assistant superintendent for facilities and construction. A registered professional engineer with more than 16 years of experience, he received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical Samir Patel engineering from Texas A&M University. He is at work completing his master’s degree in business administration from the University of Houston Downtown. Patel was most recently the physical plant engineer responsible for operations of multiple buildings at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. He also has overseen the design and construction of the Zayed Building for Personalized Cancer Care there, currently under construction. Dave Schrandt, director of student services for admissions, attendance and transfers, was recognized as the Outstanding Homeless Liaison of the Year by the Texas Homeless Education Office. His award, which honors Dave Schrandt advocates for homeless students and their families, was presented in September during the Texas Conference on Ending Homelessness, in Austin. Schrandt, who served as local chair for the 2010 conference of the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY), has served on that organization’s board of directors since 2012. He spoke before a congressional panel sponsored by the Congressional Children’s Caucus last September and co-chaired the 2013 NAEHCY national conference in Atlanta in November. Elizabeth Wood, former associate principal of Cypress Falls High School, has been named principal of Salyards Middle See WHO’S NEWS on page 26


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January 2014 • Texas School Business

15


CSCOPE: Now that the dust has settled, where do we go from here? by Jody Serrano

T

he fight over CSCOPE and its lesson plans has moved out of the public eye, but the issues surrounding it are far from dead. The CSCOPE curriculum management system has been renamed, and some schools still use it. Parents across Texas are going to school board meetings to protest it. And the state is auditing the now defunct Texas System of Education Service Centers Curriculum Collaborative (TESCCC), a nonprofit made up of education service center representatives to oversee CSCOPE. Meanwhile, a State Board of Education committee is reviewing CSCOPE’s controversial social studies lessons, and it is expected to release its review within the next few months. The backstory CSCOPE is a curriculum management system that includes more than 1,600 lesson plans designed to align with statewide standards that school districts, at one point, could pay to use. (It now can be accessed for free.) CSCOPE faced state scrutiny earlier this year for lessons that critics claimed were anti-American and pro-Islamic. One popular example cited by many critics was a social studies lesson in which students were asked whether the British considered the Boston Tea Party an act of terrorism. According to the Texas System of Education Service Centers (ESCs), a total of 875 districts, which account for about one-third of Texas’ K-12 students, used CSCOPE lesson plans before the ESCs discontinued it.   Now that the dust has settled, those involved in the CSCOPE debacle are reflecting over why the situation got so out of control, and they are developing 16

Texas School Business • January 2014

plans to move forward. Some say it was because politicians were eager to appease the Tea Party, which foamed with rage over CSCOPE’s perceived liberal agenda. And the education service centers that oversaw CSCOPE are working fervently to regain the public’s trust by aiming to improve CSCOPE, now called the TEKS Resource System. The demise of CSCOPE also left a hole for many poor, rural school districts, which used CSCOPE because they cannot afford their own curriculum. Some of these districts are in knots over what they will do now that no new lessons will be produced to keep up with changing state standards. Nevertheless, the old CSCOPE lessons remain online in the public domain and can be used by anyone — even though some in the Legislature disapprove of them and the lessons are currently under review. Enter Ratliff As most Texas educators know, SBOE Vice Chairman Thomas Ratliff, R-Mount Pleasant, is no stranger to the CSCOPE debate. Only a few months ago, Ratliff was one of the Thomas Ratliff most vilified members of the public education community because he dared to defend CSCOPE. Looking back, he says some of the drama was definitely political. “They were looking for something to fight about, and this was it,” Ratliff said, adding, “Americans in general love to rally against a common hero or a common enemy.” Although the state board approves instructional materials and state teaching


standards, Ratliff said it does not have the power to ban CSCOPE. The committee reviewing the CSCOPE lessons will not result in a ban, he said, but its findings will be made public so districts can decide whether they want to use CSCOPE or not. Ratliff said that although many scorned him for defending CSCOPE, he fought hard to keep it because 90 percent of school districts in his region use it. His critics claimed he and his family had financial ties to CSCOPE, which he says has never been true. Ratliff has claimed he knows hundreds of districts that still use the controversial CSCOPE lessons. “If you went and talked to an average school district and an average classroom teacher, I bet they haven’t changed 5 percent of what they’re doing,” Ratliff said. “I think the one thing people who hated CSCOPE never really appreciated or understood or agreed with is that CSCOPE is one of a myriad of tools that teachers use.” And some of these people who hated CSCOPE had political motivations, Ratliff said. Throughout the debate, conservatives worked hard to appease Tea Party members who screamed the loudest about CSCOPE, he said. For instance, one of CSCOPE’s fiercest opponents has been state Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, who launched a crusade to ban CSCOPE during the Legislative session and got the education service centers to agree to stop producing lessons. At one point, Patrick threatened to report any districts that still used CSCOPE to the attorney general. Patrick is running for lieutenant governor and did not respond to requests for comment. While Patrick was one of CSCOPE’s loudest opponents, Ratliff said he does not believe Patrick used CSCOPE to launch his lieutenant governor campaign. He said he does believe, however, that there were others who tried to side with the Tea Party, an entity known for propelling politicians, such as U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, to stardom. After the CSCOPE debacle, Ratliff said many politicians are learning they

can’t always side with the Tea Party and they have to vote with their district. If they did so, the Tea Party’s influence would decrease drastically. “The analogy I use is taking a baby coyote as a house pet,” he said. “It may go great for the first 99 days, but you Mason Moses wake up on day 100 and it turns into a coyote and eats your face off.” CSCOPE becomes the TEKS Resource System Even though the Tea Party pushed lawmakers to ban CSCOPE in schools, it has not made much fuss over the TEKS Resource System. Mason Moses is the spokesperson for the Texas System of Education Service Centers, which encompasses 20 ESCs designed to support school districts by securing products and services at a reduced cost and providing professional development and technical assistance, among other tasks. Moses said his organization has made strides in addressing the concerns parents had with CSCOPE, namely its content and lack of transparency. “While it’s the same system, we really wanted to press the reset button and make sure that everything we’re doing, we’re doing it right,” he said. The centers partner with more than 10,000 vendors to secure more than $900 million in goods and services for Texas schools, according to its website. Officials claim schools saved millions by partnering with the centers in 2012. Moses said the TEKS Resource System does not include the controversial lesson plans that brought the curriculum into the spotlight. In fact, it does not offer any lesson plans. Instead, districts that buy the TEKS Resource System receive other tools, including sample assessments and year-at-a-glance planning materials. Teachers also can upload their lessons to the system and share with their peers across the state. Moses said the system aims to empower teachers with tools

to customize their own plans. The ESCs are also taking the small school districts that heavily relied on CSCOPE also taking, Moses said. They charge districts $5 per student for the TEKS Resource System, down from $7 for CSCOPE when it first launched. It also reduced the associated technology fee for the curriculum by 40 percent. Moses said he will not know how many districts are using TEKS Resource System until about January. Most importantly, Moses said his organization is excited to get back to the business of supporting school districts again, instead of focusing on the CSCOPE controversy. To do this effectively, Moses said the ESCs are working on educating the public, parents and Legislature and making sure parents have access to what’s being taught in the classroom. He said the state audit is still ongoing and that Texas System of ESCs is collaborating with state auditor John Keel. Namely, the Casey Callahan audit is investigating whether the former TESCCC used a fair and competitive bidding process when it purchased materials and services for CSCOPE.  “We were constantly engaging in legal counsel,” Moses said. “Everything we were doing was allowed by law.” The hole left by CSCOPE   The state agency was not the only one caught in the legality of CSCOPE. In August, residents sued Llano ISD for its continued use of CSCOPE. Llano ISD currently uses the TEKS Resource System and also uses the controversial CSCOPE lessons. (A judge threw out the case for lack of jurisdiction.) Llano ISD Superintendent Casey Callahan said his district does not have money to develop its own curriculum and has had great success with CSCOPE. Callahan’s case is not unique. Many rural school districts do not have the staff, See CSCOPE on page 19

January 2014 • Texas School Business

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Texas School Business • January 2014


CSCOPE continued from page 17

budget or time to develop a curriculum. Callahan said he has about 160 full-time teachers who would have to work overtime to create one. At the administration level, only Callahan and one other staffer work on curriculum. Eventually, CSCOPE lessons will cease to be relevant as state education standards change. Callahan said his district still does not have a solution for what it will do when that happens. “We’re consistently looking for tools that will help us deliver our mission,” Callahan said. “Have we found something that’s like that? No. We have found some tools that have helped us, but not the complete package.” In South Texas, Laredo ISD Superintendent Marcus Nelson said his district has been using CSCOPE for at least five years and that it guides all conversations on teaching and learning. ToMarcus Nelson day, the district uses the TEKS Resource System and also continues to refer to the original CSCOPE lessons. “We don’t have any plans not to use them,” Nelson said. “We also don’t require them. We allow our teachers to have access to them.” Nelson said that while his district does have the monetary resources to create its own curriculum, it uses CSCOPE lessons and the TEKS Resource System to save time and better allocate its resources. Laredo ISD prefers to have its best teachers training new teachers, not writing curriculum when it can be bought, the superintendent said.

The correct answer was, “Decisions made in the U.S. negatively affected people elsewhere.” Sands urged her district to stop using CSCOPE and also petitioned the state. She said at one point she was driving to Austin multiple times a week to attend CSCOPE hearings. She claims she gets messages from parents every week asking her for advice on how to fight CSCOPE and get it out of their schools.

“Parents are waking up and seeing you have to be active and take an active role in your children’s education,” she said. “It’s only going to get bigger.” JODY SERRANO works for Reporting Texas. She has worked as a reporter for the Austin American-Statesman and The Texas Tribune, covering public K-12 education, higher education and politics.

Looking forward On the other side, parents also agree that the battle over CSCOPE is not over. Corpus Christi parent Kara Sands was outraged when her child came home with a CSCOPE test earlier this year that asked why the United States might be a target for terrorism. January 2014 • Texas School Business

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In the

Spotlight

New Boston ISD’s Gary VanDeaver throws hat into the ring for state office by Leila Kalmbach

I

f it’s 6:30 in the morning, you can bet that Superintendent Gary VanDeaver is already in his office at New Boston ISD, as the first school buses begin to roll onto his campuses. He’s often still at work late in the evenings for a football game, banquet or meeting, which doesn’t leave much time for his hobbies of woodworking or chuck wagon cooking.

(Fun fact: VanDeaver owns an antique chuck wagon from the late 1800s that he and his family have taken to cooking competitions involving cast-iron Dutch ovens over an open fire.) Oh, and in his “spare time,” he is running for state office. New Boston ISD is a district of five campuses in Bowie County in far

Education is New Boston ISD Superintendent Gary VanDeaver’s main political priority as he runs for state representative in House District 1. His goal is to restore local control to school districts. 20

Texas School Business • January 2014

northeast Texas, near Texarkana. After 32 years in education, VanDeaver is running for state representative in House District 1. He will face incumbent George Lavender in the Republican primary on March 4. VanDeaver didn’t always have political ambitions. He says as a high school student in Clarksville, he wasn’t highly motivated. When he started Paris Junior College, he had thoughts of going into dentistry — more for the salary than a passion for health care. Yet his high school ag ed program ended up having an influence on him. “It was really those experiences in high school ag that made me realize there is a need out there, that there are other students out there like me,” VanDeaver says. He pursued a bachelor’s degree in agricultural education from East Texas State University, stayed on for a master’s degree in education and later earned his doctorate in education. After putting in his time as a teacher and principal, he spent nine years as superintendent of Rivercrest ISD before taking his current position in New Boston. VanDeaver was honored as the Region 8 Superintendent of the Year a few years back, but what he is most proud of isn’t a plaque hanging in his office. “I’ve been fortunate that my entire career has been in northeast Texas in a relatively small radius, so I have the opportunity to see former students in adult life,” he says. “I feel a lot more accomplishment when I speak to them than when I look at the wall and see the plaque hanging there.” One individual, in particular, comes to mind — a challenging student who was a “frequent flyer” to the principal’s office when VanDeaver was principal at Rivercrest. Six or seven years after the


FUN FACTS ABOUT

GARY VANDEAVER Last book I read that I really enjoyed: “Team of Rivals” by Doris Kearns Goodwin I earned my first dollar by: Scrubbing a dairy barn for a neighbor around age 11. A bad habit I’d love to break: Waking up every morning at 2 a.m. with things on my mind. I’d love to be able to sleep all night! Best advice I’ve received in my role as superintendent: Someone once told me, “A superintendent should begin each day by asking himself: How will the decisions I make today affect the children in my district?”

student graduated, VanDeaver received a letter from him. “It was on congressional stationery letterhead, and he told me that he was a senior aide to a U.S. congressman in Washington,” VanDeaver remembers. “He wanted to thank me for not giving up on him and for being patient with him, and he even quoted something I’d told him sitting in my office. Those are the moments that — you can’t buy those.” VanDeaver is a self-described “proud Texan” who has always been interested in state politics but only recently became frustrated enough to want to get involved. “Public schools continue to come under attack,” he says, “in many cases very unfairly attacked and viciously attacked.” The turning point came this past legislative session with the passage of House Bill 5, a bill that changed Texas graduation requirements. VanDeaver says he believes HB 5 is among the most significant pieces of education legislation in recent decades.

“Throughout that entire process, my representative never reached out to me to even see how any of that was going to affect my district — to see if I had any thoughts on how it might be improved,” he says. “I kept thinking, ‘I wish someone would step up and run for office who at least knows what goes on inside a public school.’” VanDeaver eventually realized he was that person. Education is VanDeaver’s main political priority, and his goal is to restore local control to school districts. He says he believes that will allow districts the freedom to provide the best educational opportunities for their students. He’s also concerned with improving the economy in northeast Texas, as well as with planning for Texas’ future water needs. “I don’t think there’s a huge difference between the responsibilities of a superintendent and the responsibilities of a representative,” VanDeaver says. “You’re working for the public, you’re working for the good of those you serve, and you’re trying to create better

opportunities for people. You certainly hear a number of complaints on both sides, so that will not be anything new to me.” Since announcing his campaign, he hasn’t received any complaints from his wife, Pam; two adult daughters, Kacey and Katelyn; or his colleagues in the school district — all of whom have been supportive of his campaign. Although the positions of superintendent and state representative have their similarities, the election process is very different. House District 1 is not large compared to many, but it does cover four counties. And campaigning has taken up most of his evenings that aren’t spent on school-related events. “If anything has surprised me about entering politics, it’s the amount of time that it takes to run a campaign,” VanDeaver says. “I’m working some very long days and nights.” We wish you the best of luck, Superintendent VanDeaver! LEILA KALBACH is a freelance writer in Austin.

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January 2014 • Texas School Business

21


TASB PRESIDENT profile HEB ISD trustee believes in sharing successes by Autumn Rhea Carpenter

I

n 1991, Faye Beaulieu didn’t realize that her decision to pop popcorn for a PTA meeting at Meadow Creek Elementary School in Bedford would lead to becoming PTA president two years later and then spending the next 18 years on the Hurst-Euless-Bedford (HEB) ISD School Board — the past six of those as the board’s president. When Beaulieu and her husband, Walt, decided to move their family to HEB ISD, they quickly discovered that the schools were the district’s best-kept secret.

“When I first attended the school board meetings, I was fascinated with the process,” says Beaulieu, whose day job entails serving as a regional director for the United Way. “I had never thought about how the elected board functioned; I learned that someone had to set the budget, determine teachers’ salaries and approve the curriculum. I ran for the board because I was thrilled with the school district, impressed with its strong curriculum and saw an opportunity to join a welcoming, supportive environment.”

Growing up in Alabama and Mississippi, Beaulieu had parents who instilled the importance of an education. She completed a bachelor of arts degree in English from Mississippi State College for Women (now the Mississippi University for Women) with a $3,000 Touchdown Club scholarship. Beaulieu later completed her master’s and doctorate degrees in English at the University of Mississippi. Coming from rural roots, Beaulieu says she can appreciate what student diversity brings to the classroom experience. She and her husband of 34 years have four

Faye Beaulieu is a full-time regional director for the United Way, but that doesn’t stop her from working to ensure her school district — and districts statewide — are offering students the best K-12 education possible. 22

Texas School Business • January 2014


FUN FACTS ABOUT

FAYE BEAULIEU

My closest friends would describe me as: Busy, productive and friendly Something most people don’t know about me is: I have a ham radio license and my call sign is KA5MKA. I’ve also been a certified scuba diver for almost 20 years. Early bird or night owl? I’m an early bird who wakes at 5 a.m. and is asleep by 9 p.m.

children, all of whom completed their education in HEB ISD schools. She says her children were impacted by the demographic changes among the district’s 22,000 students during her board tenure. “My own children feel that their experience in a diverse district has been incredibly valuable in both their college and professional careers,” she says. “They have an appreciation for cultural differences and ethnic customs that students from more homogeneous educational careers just don’t have, and I think that’s been huge for all of them.” The Beaulieu children include Aimee Schmidt, 32, a teacher in Frankfurt, Germany; Carla Behlen, 30, a media buyer at the Richards Group in Dallas; Steven Beaulieu, 26, an Air Force captain and KC-135 pilot, stationed in England; and Caryn Beaulieu, 24, an employee at the New Orleans, La., Downtown Marriott at the Convention Center. Beaulieu dedicates 15 hours a month to HEB ISD board work and between 10 to 12 hours per month for her TASB duties. A graduate of Leadership TASB and a Master Trustee, Beaulieu has chaired the TASB Planning and Development Committee, the Member Services Committee, the Legislative Committee, and the Budget and Finance Committee. She also has been a member of the TASB Legal Assistance Fund Board and has participated in the TASB Delegate Assembly for many years. Beaulieu’s work at the United Way emphasizes volunteerism, financial stability and health. She says this philosophy dovetails into her work as a school trustee. Her collaborations with community partners have led to initiatives such as Get Up and Go!, an obesity intervention program for school-aged children, and the HEB ISD Child Care

Partnership, which helps child care centers prepare preschoolers for elementary school. Beaulieu says she’s a big believer in leveraging the power of social media tools, her district’s website and parent surveys to share successes, strengthen communication and improve the overall image of public education. “Public schools are not failing, and our buildings are not crumbling,” she says. “It is our job to share our positive stories and not get lost in the daily struggles.” Some of the initiatives her district has promoted in the past include HEB ISD’s schools of choice, the high school’s International Baccalaureate program and the district’s full-day kindergarten program. “We realize that we don’t have a cookie-cutter student population and that each child requires a different pathway to reach their academic goals,” says

Beaulieu. “Our district is getting better at addressing the individual student’s needs while keeping the curriculum quality consistent.” Communicating with state and federal legislators is equally important, Beaulieu says. “Talking to a legislator from District 92 who knows exactly how HEB ISD will be affected by new legislation has made a huge difference,” she says. “Especially during elections, you have to know where candidates stand and get an honest evaluation of their educational principles.” One of Beaulieu’s proudest professional moments occurred during this past legislative session when she shook hands with Texas House Rep. Jimmie Don Aycock. “Representative Aycock didn’t recognize my name, but he remembered that the Education Resource Group awarded our district (one of the 200 largest school districts in Texas) as the top school district in the state,” says Beaulieu. “It’s powerful to be recognized by someone with no internal understanding of what we do.” Beaulieu says she believes that the future of Texas’ educated workforce and citizenry depends on public education. “We cannot be a successful state or nation without children who receive a quality education,” she says. “We are training the next generation of leaders, and that’s a challenge we gladly accept.” AUTUMN RHEA CARPENTER is a freelance writer in Austin.

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Creating the workforce of tomorrow today House Bill 5 promises to change the face of public high school education in Texas. An area superintendent shares how districts can manage the new requirements. by Royce Avery, El Paso ISD area superintendent

I

n 2014, sweeping changes are in store for Texas high schools, thanks to the introduction of House Bill 5 (HB 5), which was made into law during the 83rd legislative session. While generally positive for Texas public school students, HB 5 puts new constraints on high school administrators and teachers. As one of only a handful of states that has so far opted not to participate in the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) initiative, Texas clearly has its eye on helping to develop tomorrow’s workforce by assisting students in fine-tuning their career choices before graduation. Under HB 5, for example, students will select a diploma “endorsement” in one of five areas: science and technology, business and industry, public services, humanities, or a multidisciplinary option. It’s no longer all about academics; it’s about career preparedness and giving students the tools and information they

need to gain better perspective into career pathways at an earlier age. This path should begin forming in middle school and then can be developed further during the high school years, when career routes and options can be explored and selected. In anticipation of HB 5, school administrators must make staffing decisions and develop relationships with nearby community colleges, universities and employers that can offer the range of courses and training needed to complete the endorsements. For some districts, this transition to endorsements may come rather easily. For other smaller or rural districts, it will be problematic. Steps to success Last year when I was superintendent at Aransas Pass ISD, we collaborated with Bill Symonds, a Harvard researcher who authored the report “Pathways to Prosperity”; Sylvia Carrillo, city manager

HB 5 FAST FACTS With the passage of House Bill 5, students now will need fewer science, math and social studies credits to graduate, but they will be able to earn more workforce-related credits in business and industry, humanities, and science and technology. Four English credits will remain mandatory for graduation. HB 5 also reduces, from 15 to five, the number of standardized exams (STAAR tests) that high school students must pass to graduate. The changes associated with HB 5 don’t end there. The new law also allows school districts to offer a course or activity (including an apprenticeship or training hours needed to obtain an industryrecognized credential or certificate) for local credit without obtaining approval from the State Board of Education as long as the district develops a partnership with an institution of higher education and a local business. Districts also will be allowed to pair up with institutions of higher education to develop and provide courses in college prep math and English language arts (ELA) for seniors whose performance on end-of-course (EOC) exams indicates they are not ready to perform entry-level college coursework.

24

Texas School Business • January 2014

of Aransas Pass; Rosemary Vega of the Aransas Pass Chamber of Commerce; John Costilla of WIN Learning; and Shannon Buerk of EngageToLearn. Our mission was to discuss and align our current activities and make recommendations for moving efforts forward. Using our meetings as a foundation, we decided to create a scalable, easy-toreplicate program to help all schools and districts — from large, urban districts to small, rural entities — meet HB 5 requirements. The plan centers on developing best practices for educational technology programs that combine core curriculum with support from local businesses, trade schools and associations, as well as technology programs. All of these programs, of course, are in the interest of driving personalized career and college-readiness for students. To ensure that every APISD student has an equal opportunity to make a smooth transition from high school to college and/or work, we recently implemented a standards-aligned, Web-based program that helps students effectively prepare for the realities of college and the workplace. Based on real-world information and data, the WIN Learning Personalized Career Readiness System includes personalized, project-based learning and career exploration, particularly in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Measuring the impact As one of 28 Texas superintendents who was involved in the early stages of HB 5’s development and was charged with helping to rethink education in the state, I’m proud to say that APISD students will now graduate more careerand college-ready than ever before. This is an awesome opportunity for schools to engage with their communities and area businesses to help build out the workforce of tomorrow.


As it stands now, HB 5 will have a huge impact on Texas as a whole and on the way schools develop and support their curriculum options. It’s going to change the face of public education and ensure that our 21st-century learners not only have more opportunities at their fingertips but that they’re also well-equipped to recognize and grab those opportunities as they present themselves.

Among the participants at the business and education summit at Aransas Pass ISD in the spring of 2013 were (from left) Shannon Buerk, CEO of Engage! Learning; Royce Avery, former superintendent of Aransas Pass ISD (now area superintendent of El Paso ISD); William C. Symonds, director of the Pathways to Prosperity Project, Harvard Graduate School of Education; and John Costilla, vice president of strategic relations at WIN Learning.

ROYCE AVERY is an area superintendent for El Paso ISD. He is a life-long educator with classroom and district-level experience in Aransas Pass, Woodsboro, Lubbock and Waco ISDs, as well as with the Texas Education Agency. Avery received his undergraduate degree from Rice University. He holds a master’s degree in educational leadership and administration from Texas A&M University. He earned his doctorate in educational administration and supervision from The University of Texas at Austin.

January 2014 • Texas School Business

25


Who’s News

year. He joined that organization in 2009 and taught high school for three years in rural Mississippi. At the end of that time, he went to Harvard University for a master’s degree in school leadership. While there, he completed a principal internship at the Codman Academy Charter Public School in Dorchester, Mass. Mackey joined Dallas ISD at the beginning of this school year.

WHO’S NEWS continued from page 14

School. She was in her previous position for five years and, prior to that, was the school’s director of instruction for six years and academic achievement specialist for a year. She began Elizabeth Wood her career as a teacher in Louisiana, then spent nine years teaching at Cypress Falls before taking her first administrative position. Woods, who received her bachelor’s degree in education from Louisiana State University, holds a master’s degree in educational administration from Stephen F. Austin State University.

Dew ISD The district has a new superintendent, Lynn Jantzen, who most recently was director of curriculum and instruction for Kaufman ISD. She began her career in Frisco ISD as a teacher and coach, then worked in several other Texas districts. After spending 15 years in athletic administration, she took her first campus administration job in Hillsboro ISD, where she was a junior high assistant principal. Jantzen then was a junior high and high school principal in Wortham ISD before joining Kaufman ISD. A graduate of Northwestern Oklahoma State University with a degree in education, she received her master’s degree in educational administration from Tarleton State University.

Dallas ISD The new principal of Dallas ISD’s School for the Talented and Gifted is, at age 26, the youngest principal in the district. Ben Mackey earned his bachelor’s degree in finance and history from the University of Florida at Gainesville but took a different career path after visiting a Teach for America booth at a job fair during his senior

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the University of Arizona School of Law, she has been a partner at the El Paso firm of Kemp Smith and also has worked in the county attorney’s office and with the El Paso Legal Assistance Society. Another new area superintendent is Danna Diaz, who was most recently director of student engagement at Fort Worth ISD. An educator for 25 years, she has been a bilingual education teacher, assistant principal, bilingual coDanna Diaz ordinator and elementary school principal. She earned her doctoral degree from The University of Texas. Fairfield ISD Sheila Dove, former assistant superintendent for the district, is now serving as interim superintendent. She came to Fairfield ISD in 2001 from Hico ISD, where she was a principal. Dove holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Tarleton State University. Fort Bend ISD Steven Bassett is the district’s new chief financial officer. He comes to the district from Northside ISD in San Antonio, where he was assistant superintendent for finance and budgets. Prior to that, he was chief financial officer and associate superintendent for financial services and operations for San Antonio ISD. He also served as senior director of budgets and financial control for North East ISD, also in San Antonio. In addition, he has worked for the Texas Association of School Business Officials, the Texas Association of School Administrators, the San Antonio Treasury Management Association, and the Alamo Area Association of School Business Officials. Basset holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from The University of Texas. Fort Sam Houston ISD Board President Deborah Seabron has been elected to a one-year term with the Texas Association of School Boards. A district trustee since 2004, she will represent Region 20A. She is a supervisor management analyst with Joint Base San Antonio and chief of the 502nd Mission Support Group, Commander’s Action Group at Fort Sam Houston. Fredericksburg ISD Marc Williamson, who has been su-

Who’s News

perintendent since 1998, has announced his upcoming retirement. He began his career as a language arts teacher in New Braunfels’ Comal ISD in 1975 and became assistant principal of Fredericksburg Middle School in Fredericksburg ISD in 1978, going on to serve as that school’s principal until 1984, when he accepted the position of assistant superintendent for instruction and personnel in Hereford ISD. He then was superintendent of Pine Tree ISD from 1989 to 1998 before returning to Fredericksburg ISD to take the top job. Williamson earned his bachelor’s degree in English and his master’s degree in educational administration from Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University) and his doctorate in educational administration from Texas Tech University. Gold-Burg ISD New Superintendent Roger Ellis comes to the district from Tom Bean ISD, where he spent the past seven years as a principal. He has been an educator since 1991, beginning with five years as a special education lead Roger Ellis teacher in the behavior adjustment unit of the Collin County Special Education Cooperative in Wylie. He then was Anna ISD’s special education coordinator, followed by service as that district’s middle school principal. He joined Tom Bean ISD in 2002 as principal of Tom Bean

Middle School before taking on the job of Tom Bean High principal. Ellis earned his bachelor’s degree in economics and finance and business administration from The University of Texas at Dallas and his master’s degree in educational leadership from Texas Woman’s University. Goose Creek CISD Blanca Capetillo has been named principal of Bowie Elementary School. She has spent her 14-year career in Goose Creek CISD, working as a teacher, family involvement coordinator and assistant Blanca Capetillo principal, most recently at Walker Elementary. Capetillo earned both her bachelor’s degree in bilingual education and her master’s degree in educational management from the University of Houston at Clear Lake. Eloy Chapa is the district’s new director of personnel for high school and auxiliary services. He brings 32 years of experience to his new job and was most recently executive director of human resources for Victoria ISD. Chapa’s bachelor’s and master’s degrees were earned from Texas A&I University (now Texas A&M University at Kingsville).

See WHO’S NEWS on page 28

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Who’s News WHO’S NEWS continued from page 27

Now serving as assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction is Melissa Duarte. During her 22 years as an educator, she has been an elementary curriculum coordinator, an executive director for curriculum and instrucMelissa Duarte tion, and most recently assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction for Sharyland ISD. Duarte earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration, her master’s degree in education and her doctorate in education from The University of Texas Pan American. Nancy Fitzgerald has been appointed an area executive director for the Sterling High School feeder pattern. An educator for 30 years, she has served as director of curriculum and instruction for Hardin-Jefferson Nancy Fitzgerald ISD, dean of instruction for Sheldon ISD and sec-

ondary reading/English language arts coordinator for Humble ISD. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University, a master’s degree in English teaching from Villanova University and a doctorate in education from the University of Houston. Marie Flynn, the new area executive director for the Goose Creek Memorial High School feeder pattern, has 21 years of experience as an educator. She has served as an associate principal, principal and lead curriculum diMarie Flynn rector for Humble ISD. She has a bachelor’s degree from St. John’s University and a master’s degree in education from the University of Houston. Now serving as chief financial officer for Goose Creek CISD is Margie Grimes, who had been the district’s director of finance. During her 26 years as a finance administrator, she has worked as district treasurer in North East ISD in San Antonio, director of financial services operations in Humble ISD, assistant director of finance

for the City of Baytown, and director of finance for the City of La Porte and the City of Mont Belvieu. Grimes earned her bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Houston at Clear Lake. The new principal of Baytown Junior School is Susan Jackson, who had been serving as assistant principal of Sterling High School. An educator for 19 years, she also has been a teacher and a principal. She received her bachelor’s Susan Jackson degree in English and reading and her master’s degree in educational leadership from Stephen F. Austin State University. Highland Junior School now has Sandra Knezek as principal. She spent 17 of her 32 years in education as a classroom teacher and also worked as an assistant principal for two years and a principal for 13 years in Alice ISD. Sandra Knezek

DAVIS DEMOGRAPHICS & PLANNING 18 16 14

Percent

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Population by Age

12 10 8 6 2012 2017

4 2 0

0-4

5-9

10-14

15-19

20-24

2012 Household Income

25-34

35-44

45-54

55-64

65-74

75-84

85+

2012 Population by Race

$15K - $24K 14.3%

50 45

$25K - $34K 12.1%

<$15K 18.2%

40

Percent

35

$35K - $49K 14.4%

• • • • • •

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$200K+ 5.6% $150K - $199K 4.0%

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30 25 20 15 10 5 0

White

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Black

Am. Ind.

Asian

2012 Percent Hispanic Origin: 45.0%

Pacific

Other

Two+


Who’s News Knezek’s bachelor’s degree in elementary education and master’s degree in education were both awarded from Texas A&I University (now Texas A&M University at Kingsville). The district’s new executive director of assessment, research and evaluation is Raul Moreno, who was previously executive director of student services and assistant superintendent for instructional support in Ector County ISD. Raul Moreno Moreno, who has a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in education from Sul Ross State University, has been an educator for 18 years. The district has a Bernard new athletic director. Mulvaney He is Bernard Mulvaney, who has taught and coached Houston, Channelview, Fort Bend, Alief and

Aldine ISDs; he was athletic coordinator for Aldine ISD for five years. Mulvaney received his bachelor’s degree from North Central College and his master’s degree in education from Lamar University. Jacquelyn Narro is the new principal of IMPACT Early College High School. She has been an educator for 17 years, most recently serving as assistant principal of curriculum and instruction for Aldine Jacquelyn Narro ISD’s Victory Early College High School. Narro earned her bachelor’s degree from The University of Texas Pan American and two master’s degrees, one in library science and one in administration, from Sam Houston State University. Now serving as principal of Mann Junior School is Erica Navejar, who has been an educator for 10 years. She comes to her new position from Gentry Junior School, where she was assistant principal. She also has held that posiErica Navejar tion at Highlands Junior School and Harlem Elementary. Navejar has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston and a master’s degree in education from Lamar University.

Randal O’Brien, the new deputy superintendent for administrative services, comes to his new job from Hubbard ISD, where he was superintendent for the past four years. He also has worked as a Randal O’Brien high school principal in Blooming Grove ISD and as a middle school principal in Tarkington ISD, among other administrative positions. O’Brien, who earned his bachelor’s degree in business management from East Texas Baptist University and his master’s degree in education administration from Sam Houston State University, is nearing completion of his doctorate at Lamar University. Carver Elementary School started the school year with Melissa Reichardt as principal. She was a teacher and assistant principal in Galena Park and Fort Bend ISDs before coming to Goose Creek. Reichardt Melissa Reichardt holds a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies and a master’s degree in early childhood education, both from the University of Houston Clear Lake.

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THE BACK PAGE by Riney Jordan

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Wake up! Our public schools are in trouble

I

don’t know about you, but I am amazed at the decline in public support for our public schools over the past few years. Many of us remember when our public schools were respected, revered and treasured. And while we realize that our public schools have served us well for more than a century, the increase in students being home-schooled, the dramatic increase in both private and parochial schools, and the dissatisfaction from the public that is reflected in survey after survey should certainly cause us to stop and think. We need to ask ourselves some serious questions and be prepared for some startling answers. It seems that everywhere I go, the topic comes up for discussion. For the most part, it seems that school personnel feel that it is the fault of the parents. And, you guessed it, the parents blame the schools. Oh my. I recently decided to strike up a discussion on Facebook. I posed the following questions: What are public schools not providing, if anything, that has caused such an increase in homeschooling, private schools, etc., and a decrease in public support? In other words, what would it take for public schools to improve public confidence? Again, oh my! I got some passionate and immediate responses! Many cited lack of discipline in our schools. Others raged about excessive amounts of testing. Many comments indicated that schools were not concerned about character traits. On and on the comments went: “Kids don’t know how to make change when you give them money at a store.” “Teachers aren’t paid enough.” “Teachers are paid too much.” “Can you believe that they don’t teach handwriting anymore?” “The teacher/student ratio is way too high.” “Back in my day teachers paddled. If they did that today, Child Protective Services would be there!” Well, I did ask, didn’t I? But hold on. It’s not just adults who feel that everything is not right in our public schools; students aren’t that pleased either. In a recent survey conducted at Indiana University, more than 81,000 students responded to the annual High School Survey of Student En30

Texas School Business • January 2014

gagement. Some 110 high schools participated. And guess what they learned. The findings revealed that two out of every three students are bored in class every day, while 17 percent indicated that they were bored in every single class they took! Why are students bored? Their overwhelming responses were: “The material wasn’t interesting” or “It wasn’t relevant to me.” Hmmm. As Desi Arnaz would always say to Lucy, we’ve “got some ’splainin’ to do!” Listing the problems may be easy, but solving them is no easy task in today’s complex and multifaceted world. In all the surveys, polls and studies, there are some issues that always seem to surface. These include, in no particular order: lack of discipline, ineffective teachers, need for the “basics” in instruction, schools taking on too many social issues, lack of rules and their enforcement, excessive testing, not challenging students, need for vocational classes, not enough parent involvement, less government intervention, and more relevant instruction. Over the next several months, I will share with you what some consider to be possible solutions to these problems. Their suggestions are based on research studies, common sense and a strong desire to make things better. This isn’t just a problem for school administrators, board members or teachers. It’s a problem that should concern us all. In some ways, we’re all responsible for it due to our lack of involvement, looking the other way, not supporting programs that help kids and, in far too many cases, not seriously assuming the role of a parent. In the meantime, tell the good news about our schools, support them whenever possible and know that we’re talking about the lives of children here — children who are going to be adults in a few more years and are going to be the next generation of parents, leaders, workers and problem solvers. Let’s not wait until then when the problem will be even bigger. RINEY JORDAN, whose best-selling book “All the Difference” is now in its sixth printing, is an international speaker and humorist. He can be reached at riney@yahoo.com or by visiting www.rineyjordan.com.

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