THE INDEPENDENT VOICE FOR PUBLIC EDUCATION IN TEXAS FOR 59 YEARS
July / August 2013
Grassroots movement steers us away from teaching to the test
In the Spotlight Charles Clark Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD
Texas ASCDâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Carl Key New Diana ISD
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TSB contents news and features
On the cover Parents, educators lobby for change in how we measure student performance, schools by Joanna Cattanach
16 photo feature ACET convenes in Austin
In the Spotlight Head custodian Charles Clark receives national recognition
by Raven L. Hill
columns From the Editor
The Law Dawg — Unleashed
by Katie Ford by Jim Walsh
by Terry Morawski
The Back Page
by Bobby Hawthorne
Texas ASCD President Profile New Diana ISD’s Carl Key emphasizes team approach
by Riney Jordan
by Elizabeth Millard
Cover ©Shuttershock images 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. July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
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From the Editor As we transition from summer break into another school year, some of us might feel like we never had a chance to relax and take a little time away from our jobs. Forget what your thermostat says, the hottest place in Texas this summer has been our Capitol in Austin. From women’s rights to public education policies, the Legislature has been voting on issues that have garnered widespread — and often passionate — attention from citizens of all socio-economic backgrounds. In June, Gov. Perry signed HB 5 into law, which affects the number of end-of-course exams and graduation requirements, among other things. But before this law came to pass, there were hundreds of parents and educators spending their time and energy writing their legislators, hosting town hall meetings, forming grassroots organizations, passing around petitions and doing whatever it took to advocate for change in the way we assess student performance in our public schools. The status quo of “teaching to the test” was no longer acceptable. Writer Joanne Cattanach spoke with parents and educators who, over the course of many months, contributed to the grassroots movement that ultimately led to real change at the state Capitol. In this issue, we also profile New Diana ISD Superintendent Carl Key, who serves as president of the Texas Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development. And we are proud to shine our Spotlight on Charles Clark, head of maintenance at Trinity High School in Hurst-EulessBedford ISD. Clark, who has mentored numerous Trinity High students during his tenure at the school, received the grand prize in National Life Group’s LifeChanger of the Year Award program. Writer Raven Hill spoke to Clark about what this award means to him. One last thing: Don’t forget to submit an online nomination for the Seventh Annual Bragging Rights 2013-2014 special issue. The deadline is Sept. 2. Visit www.texasschoolbusiness.com for more details.
Katie Ford Editorial Director
(ISSN 0563-2978 USPS 541-620) July / August 2013 Volume LIX, Issue 10 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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July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
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THE LAW DAWG – Unleashed by Jim Walsh
Not your usual standardized test
ccording to a reliable source, the following are examples of ACTUAL ANSWERS from ACTUAL STUDENTS on ACTUAL RECENT TESTS: Q. Name the four seasons. A. Salt, pepper, mustard…and vinegar???? Q. What is the fibula? A. A small lie. Q. What is a Caesarean section? A. A hoity-toity housing district in Rome.
Q. What is a seizure? A. A Roman emperor. Q. What does “varicose” mean? A. Nearby. Q. What is artificial insemination? A. When the farmer does it to the bull instead of the cow. Q. Define the word “benign.” A. Benign is what you will be after you be eight. Q. What does the picture below illustrate? A. That Abbott and Costello got it right.
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also follow him on Twitter @jwalshtxlawdawg. July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
Aledo ISD A new superintendent is in place for the district. He is Derek Citty, who began his career as a teacher in the Durant, Okla., public school system. He moved to Texas in 1988 to teach and coach in Texarkana’s Liberty-Eylau ISD and took his first administrative position in 1990 when he was named an assistant principal in Pleasant Grove ISD. In Carroll ISD, he was again an assistant principal before being promoted to director of administrative services. He was named assistant superintendent for administrative services in 2001. Citty received his bachelor’s degree in biology and his master’s degree in school administration from Southeastern Oklahoma State University before earning his doctoral degree in educational administration from Texas A&M University at Commerce.
to serve as deputy and interim superintendent before accepting the top position in 2011.
Anahuac ISD James Hopper is the district’s new superintendent.
Austin ISD Paul Turner, executive director of facilities, retired at the end of June. A 40-year employee of the district, he began as an instruction administration intern in 1973, going on to serve as principal of Dobie Middle School and Lanier High. He became a central office administrator in the 1990s and was in his most recent position since 2004.
Anderson-Shiro ISD Superintendent Brandon Core resigned at the end of June to take a new position in Austin, as assistant director of the Texas Center for Educational Effectiveness. He had been with the district since 2006, when he joined as AndersonShiro Junior High School principal. He went on
Association of Texas Professional Educators (ATPE) The new executive director is Gary Godsey, a longtime executive in a number of nonprofit organizations. His last assignment was chief executive officer of the Polycystic Kidney Disease Foundation, where he served since 2011. Prior to that, he was president and chief executive officer of the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas from 2000 to 2011 and president of United Way/Capital Area Austin. Godsey began his career in the nonprofit sector soon after graduation from Tennessee Tech University when he took on the role of executive director of the American Cancer Society.
Bastrop ISD Bluebonnet Elementary School will start the new academic year with Bridgette Cornelius as principal. She came to Bastrop ISD in 2010 as assistant principal of Cedar Creek High School, then served as that school’s associate principal during the 2012-2013 school year. She holds a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from Huston-Tillotson University in Austin and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Walden University. Before joining Bastrop ISD, she worked as a middle school English teacher and as an instructional specialist, then was assistant principal for the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders, all in Austin ISD. The new principal of Mina Elementary School is Reba Tucker King, who spent the past year as assistant principal of Red Rock Elementary. Prior to that, she was an assistant principal in Del Valle ISD. She began her career as a kindergarten teacher at Emile Elementary, going on to teach second, third and fourth grades and to work as a gifted and talented teacher at that school. King, who earned her bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from Stephen F. Austin State University, holds a master’s degree in educational administration from Concordia University in Austin. See WHO’S NEWS on page 12
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Texas School Business • July / August 2013
Tech Toolbox by Terry Morawski
The power of “Look what I can do!”
n my time in the work world, I’ve encountered two basic ways new ideas are embedded in organizations. The first, sometimes called command and control, relies on the leadership (often the top dog) telling people what they are going to do. If there is a fire, this type of leadership is required, as there is no time to get employee “buy in” for the right way to evacuate the building. For more complex concepts, command and control conjures images of a drill sergeant barking orders at fearful recruits. What is the alternative to command and control? Dee Hock, founder and former CEO of Visa, said: “Purpose and principle, clearly understood and articulated and commonly shared, are the genetic code of any healthy organization. To the degree that you hold purpose and principles in common among you, you can dispense with command and control. People will know how to behave in accordance with them, and they’ll do it in thousands of unimaginable, creative ways. The organization will become a vital, living set of beliefs.” This alternative to command and control is what I like to call “Look what I can do!” Under this simplified lingo, command and control would sound like, “Do this because I said so!” Each statement ends with an exclamation point, but they are read very differently. Also, “Look what I can do!” is a statement for staff to proudly show their successes. In my district, Mansfield ISD, we applied this theory to our iPad program. To quickly recap, we issued more than 10,000 iPads to high school teachers and students in the fall of 2012. By design, teachers and students learned best practices for the devices during the school year. The school year can be a busy time to learn a new device. But challenges aside, many teachers plowed forward and did great things with their iPads. So, the million-dollar question was: How do you capture that positive momen-
tum in a way that is easy for other students, parents and administrators to register? Our answer to that question was the iPad Ninja program, which singles out certain educators as iPad ninjas because of a particularly cool skill they have mastered on the device. To share their knowledge, we create short videos of the iPad ninjas demonstrating their skills. You can watch a video of iPad ninja Eric Champion from Timberview High School to get the idea: http://youtu.be/IGrhIaOVJ2Y. This was a real, live example of the “Look what I can do!” strategy in action. If you are honest, I’m sure you can think of a great initiative that died on the vine because it was launched in a top-down command and control mode. Especially when you want people to be innovative and creative, they are less willing to get on board if they feel they’re doing what they’re told. By providing recognition in this way, the school district and the individual get to win. Dan Pink wrote about how autonomy at work can lead to greater motivation in his 2009 book “Drive.” Pink writes: “A sense of autonomy has a powerful effect on individual performance and attitude. According to a cluster of recent behavioral science studies, autonomous motivation promotes greater conceptual understanding, better grades, enhanced persistence at school and in sporting activities, higher productivity, less burnout, and greater levels of psychological well-being. Those effects carry over to the workplace.” So what are you waiting for? Get out there and encourage your staff to show you what they can do. TERRY MORAWSKI is the assistant superintendent of communications and marketing for Mansfield ISD. He also covered SXSWedu for Texas School Business this year and sometimes tweets from @terrymorawski. Please send comments to terrymorawski@ gmail.com.
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ACET convenes in Austin In May, more than 650 state and federal program directors and business officials from districts across Texas gathered in Austin for the Association of Compensatory Educators of Texas’ annual spring conference.
Left to right are Angela Lawson, Center ISD; Vernora Jones, Tyler ISD; Sheila Thrash, ESC 7; Lynn Torres, Lufkin ISD; and Debbie Connor, ESC 7. John Emerich, New Caney ISD; Jim Walsh, Texas School Business; Robyn Cranmer, Canyon ISD; and Nadine Wolfe, Northside ISD.
John Cox, Rene Martinez, Norma Serna and Samuel Mijares, all from Eagle Pass ISD.
Jose Flores, LaJoya ISD, and Jorge Palacios, Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD.
Elsa Cantu, Elia Juarez and Veronica Burgoa of United ISD. 10
Texas School Business • July / August 2013
Daphne Nazworth and Becky Book of ESC 16 with Doricell Davis, Dimmitt ISD.
Madeleine Peace, Sealy ISD, with Santa Alvarado and Troy Reynolds, Splendora ISD.
Omar Chavez and Sigi Huerta of ESC 13 with Pedro Lopez, Jim Hogg County ISD.
Jackie Saenz, Gilbert Rodriguez and Alice Garcia, all of Ysleta ISD.
GAME ON! by Bobby Hawthorne
For the love of the game and the school
inda Burgess laughed when her 12-year-old son told her he planned to play seventh grade football for Fulmore Middle School, where he is enrolled in the humanities and law magnet program. He had shown not a scintilla of athletic ability. He was tall and wobbly, and his talents seemed better spent in Boy Scouts, in the orchestra, in the Episcopal church as an acolyte. He had never thrown a foot ball. Ever. “You’ll get killed,” Linda blurted — and might have protested further had her husband, Steve, not intervened. “It’s going to be OK,” he insisted. “He needs to play a team sport. Let him try.” “Fine,” Linda thought. “But he has to get in shape first. And so, the Falcon season began, mostly with Stephen riding the bench as a second- or third-string tight end. Linda didn’t expect him to play at all, so she was thrilled that he made it onto the field in every game. Not that she had a clue what he was doing when he was out there, other than standing around “looking adorable,” in her own words. Despite growing up in Shawnee, Okla., attending Notre Dame as an undergraduate and the University of Oklahoma for law school, Linda knew next to nothing about football. Stephen spent a good deal of the season trying to learn his plays and master the three-point stance. He didn’t catch a pass, and the team lost far more than it won. But it wasn’t a losing season, and here’s why: At the beginning of the season, Stephen knew none of his teammates — mostly south and east Austin neighborhood kids, mostly brown and black. Lots of free lunches and lots of issues with test scores. Fulmore can be rough, especially for a nice boy who plays the bass in the orchestra and helped the Academic Quiz Bowl team to the 2013 national tournament in Chicago. Football changed that — at least, it did for Stephen.
“Without football, he would have never interacted with kids from that neighborhoods,” Linda said. “He did through football. He wasn’t going to school with kids he had known for years. Just the opposite, and it was good for him to have to handle all of that.” It was good for Linda too. “It made me care for these kids,” she said. “I didn’t know them or their parents, and without football, I wasn’t going to know them. They weren’t part of our social circle, and I wasn’t going to meet them through work.” Linda and her husband have become woven into the fabric of the school. They care about Fulmore, and not just the magnet program. The whole school. “I didn’t realize that the Fulmore teachers come to all the games,” Linda said. “We were able to visit with them outside of the classroom. And I still can’t believe how excited I was when we finally got cheerleaders. I participated in every cheer.” Stephen briefly flirted with the idea of transferring to a private school before deciding to return to Fulmore for eighth grade. He’s more mature, more responsible. He’s spent the past year tossing the football around, tucking it under his arm should he ever catch a pass. He remains a Falcon because of football. And Linda says she’s no longer worried about injuries. Stephen is bigger, taller and slightly less wobbly. But things happen. Oddly enough, one of the Quiz Bowl boys took a tumble while crossing a Chicago street and broke his wrist. And so it goes. The season begins soon, and the Oklahoma girl — the Notre Dame graduate who barely knows the difference between a punt and a pickle — says it can’t get here fast enough. 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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WHO’S NEWS continued from page 8
Bastrop High School now has Todd Patmon as head football coach and athletic coordinator. He has served as the school’s defensive coordinator since 2009. Before joining the district, Patmon spent four years at Vista Ridge High in Leander ISD as head track coach and Todd Patmon secondary coach. He also spent three years at Austin ISD’s Reagan High
School as head coach. He was with DeSoto ISD for four years as special teams coordinator and coach. Patmon holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Oklahoma.
Beeville ISD Several new principal appointments have been made for Beeville ISD. They and their schools are: • Belinda Aguirre, Hall Elementary School; • Dee Dee Bernal, Jones High School; • Jean Blankenship, Jefferson Elementary School;
Birdville ISD Deborah Coulson returns to North Ridge Elementary School as principal. She had been principal of Smith Elementary since 2011. She served as assistant principal from 2005 to 2011. Prior to those assignments, she was assistant principal at the AcadDeborah Coulson emy at C.F. Thomas and a classroom teacher. Coulson earned her bachelor’s degree from Abilene Christian University and her master’s degree from Texas Woman’s University. The new principal of Smith Elementary School is Jessica Sandoval. She had been assistant principal at that campus since 2011 and assistant principal at Foster Village Elementary from 2009 to 2011. Additionally, she was Foster Village’s Title Jessica Sandoval I interventionist in the 2008-2009 school year, a third and fifth grade teacher there from 2004 to 2008, and a fourth and fifth grade teacher at the Academy at West Birdville from 2000 to 2004. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University and a master’s degree from Lamar University.
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Jaime Rodriguez, Hampton-MorenoDugat Early Learning Center; and Martina Villarreal, FMC Elementary School.
Bloomburg ISD A new superintendent is in place for the district. Brian Stroman has been promoted from his position as elementary principal. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Texas A&M University at Texarkana, where he also earned his master’s degree in educational administration. Stroman initially joined Birdville ISD as a technology/business teacher. Brazosport ISD A chief of police has been chosen to lead the district’s first police department. He is Brian Allen, who has been a school district police chief for 24 years, the past eight in Aldine ISD. He began his law enforcement career in 1988 with the Shoreacres Brian Allen Police Department, moving a year later to Houston Baptist University, where he served as an officer, sergeant and lieutenant. He then spent six years as a sergeant with the Texas Woman’s See WHO’S NEWS on page 14
Texas School Business • July / August 2013
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WHO’S NEWS continued from page 12
University Department of Public Safety and three years as chief of police and security at the University of St. Thomas in Houston. He was an agent with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission for four years and holds state certification as a master peace officer, crime prevention inspector, telecommunications operator, instructor and special investigator. He is president of the Texas School District Police Chiefs Association. Allen earned his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Houston and a master’s degree in political science from the University of St. Thomas. Brownwood ISD The district has a new director of special education. She is Michele Cruse. Alice Cox, special education director, has announced her retirement after 20 years in special education. She has been with the district since 2004 and was chosen as the 2011 Special Education Director of the Year by the Texas Council of Administrators of Special Education. Bryan ISD Branch Elementary School now has Tammy Brinkham as principal. She comes to her new position from La Vega ISD, where she was director of secondary education. Sandra Farris, the district’s communications director, retired in June after 34 years in education, 30 of those with Bryan ISD. She has taken a new position as executive director of the Downtown Bryan Association. Crystal Goodman, previously dean of inSandra Farris structional improvement at
Spring ISD, is the district’s new director of human resources and administration. Brandon Jayroe comes to his job as principal of Austin Middle School from Palestine ISD, where he was principal of the district’s intermediate and elementary schools. Brenda McCullar, who was the district’s coordinator for elementary special services, is now principal of Kemp Elementary School. Brandon Webb is now the district’s communications director. He comes to his new job from Blinn College, where he was associate director of marketing and communications. Canutillo ISD Pedro Galaviz is the district’s new superintendent, coming to El Paso from Round Rock ISD, where he was director of secondary education. He began his career in 1999 as a science and math teacher in Dallas ISD. In 2005, he was named Principal of the Year by the Texas State Pedro Galaviz Reading Association for his literacy initiatives. During his tenure in Dallas, he served on the superintendent’s principal leadership team. Galaviz holds a bachelor’s degree in biology and a master’s degree in elementary education from Texas State University. His doctorate in educational leadership was awarded from The University of Texas. Carroll ISD Eubanks Intermediate School will start the new academic year with Deanna Steeber as principal. An educator for 17 years, she has been a chemistry and AP chemistry teacher and also has taught integrated physics and biology. In addition, she was principal of Sanger Middle
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School for five years and of Chapel Hill Junior High and High School for two years. Steeber, who earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Southeastern Oklahoma State University, is working on her docDeanna Steeber torate at Texas A&M University at Commerce. Mark Terry, former principal of Eubanks Intermediate School, has retired after 33 years in Texas public education. He has been with Carroll ISD since 1995 and was principal at Eubanks since 2001. During his career, Terry worked at both the elementary and secondary level in Mark Terry rural, urban and suburban districts. He began as a teacher at Dunn Elementary School in Arlington ISD, going on to serve as assistant principal of that school and of Lamar High School and Miller Elementary. He was with Gladewater ISD from 1993 to 1995 as principal of Weldon Intermediate School, joining Carroll ISD as principal of Durham Elementary and Intermediate School. College Station ISD A number of administrative appointments have been made. They and their schools are: • Kathryn Ballard, assistant principal, Greens Prairie Elementary School; • Kellie Deegear, principal, Cypress Grove Intermediate School; • Omar Espitia, assistant principal, A&M Consolidated High School; • Jason Hawkins, principal, Rock Prairie Elementary School; • Ronnie Helm, assistant principal, Center for Alternative Learning; • Stormy Hickman, assistant principal, A&M Consolidated High School; • Jeff Mann, principal, Oakwood Intermediate School; • Maria Ramirez, assistant principal, Oakwood Intermediate School; • Courtney Smith, assistant principal, Cypress Grove Intermediate School; and • Josh Symank, assistant principal, Pebble Creek Elementary School. Comal ISD Scott Dalton has left his position as assistant principal of Canyon Middle School to join Freiheit Elementary as an assistant principal. Jay Huffty, who had been assistant principal of Morningside Elementary, has been named assistant principal of Rahe Bulverde Elementary. Kristi Kahil, former assistant principal of Hoffman Lane Elementary School, is now principal of the district’s newest campus, Mountain
Valley Elementary, which will open for the new academic year. Cheryl Koury, who was principal of Canyon Lake High School, has moved to Comal ISD’s Community Education Department. Chelsy Merrill, former academic dean of Smithson Valley High, now serves as an assistant principal at Mountain Valley Middle School. Lori Montelongo has left Mountain Valley Middle School, where she was an assistant principal. She now works in the district’s Legal Services Department. Alan Reaves, assistant principal of Rahe Bulverde Elementary, retired at the end of the school year. Sharon Richardson, most recently principal of Rebecca Creek Elementary School, has retired after 26 years with the district. Teresa Rodgers has been named principal of Kinder Ranch Elementary School. Lauri Schroeder has transferred from her position as principal of Timberwood Park Elementary School to Canyon Middle School, where she will be an assistant principal. Kathy Thomas, most recently assistant principal of Freiheit Elementary, now leads Morningside Elementary as principal. Brian Uriegas, former assistant principal of Canyon Middle School, is now principal of Morningside Elementary. Patti Vlieger, former principal of Canyon Middle School, now serves as assistant principal of Comal Discipline Center and the Comal Academy. Corbee Wunderlich has been named principal of Canyon Lake High School. He was most recently principal of Alamo CollegesMemorial Early College High School. Copperas Cove ISD Dina Edgar has been selected to serve as executive director of business services. She most recently held the same position in Leander ISD and previously worked in the private sector and in school districts in New York. Robert Edmonson will retire in August as chief financial officer. He began his career as a social studies teacher and soccer coach in Killeen ISD, going on to become administrative assistant to the superintendent. He then spent a year as a school finance specialist with the Department of Education in Washington, D.C., before coming to Copperas Cove ISD in 1993. He also has been an educational data analyst with Impact Aid, a training and consulting service, since 2000. Edmonson earned his bachelor’s degree from Southwestern University in Georgetown and his master’s degree in education from Tarleton State University. After leaving Copperas Cove ISD, he will begin a new career working for the Episcopal Church in Killeen and as a chaplain in an area hospital. Corpus Christi ISD Longtime educator and Carroll High School Principal Eddie Chachere retired in
June, capping a 32-year career.
Corrigan-Camden ISD Superintendent Thomas Bowman brought an education career spanning 39 years to a close when he retired at the end of June. Bowman, the son and grandson of Texas school district superintendents, spent the past 13 years with Corrigan-Camden ISD. The district’s new superintendent is Sherry Hughes, a graduate of Corrigan-Camden ISD schools who has worked at Corrigan-Camden High School for the past 17 years. Cumby ISD Shelly Slaughter, former principal of Lone Oak High School in Lone Oak ISD, is the district’s new superintendent. Cypress-Fairbanks ISD Cy-Fair High School head baseball coach Woody Champagne had his 600th career win in April when the Bobcats defeated Cypress Springs High, 3-1. Wrapping up his 39th season of coaching high school baseball, he began his career at Aldine ISD’s Eisenhower High, where he remained for six years before joining Woody Cypress-Fairbanks ISD. He Champagne
has been with the district for 33 years. Irene Ruiz, assistant principal of Moore Elementary School since 2010, is now leading Robinson Elementary as principal. Prior to joining the district, she was an elementary bilingual teacher in Northside ISD and a kindergarten and second grade teacher in Arlington ISD, where she also served as assistant principal of Wimbish Elementary. Ruiz holds a bachelor’s Irene Ruiz degree in communications from The University of Texas and a master’s degree in educational leadership and policy studies from The University of Texas at Arlington. Cypress Ridge High School head coach and athletic coordinator Gary Thiebaud is a new member of the Greater Houston Football Coaches Association’s Hall of Honor. He was inducted during the GHFCA spring awards ceremony at the University of Houston. He has been with the district for 19 years and has 35 years of teaching and Gary Thiebaud coaching experience. See WHO’S NEWS on page 19
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July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
HOW WE MEASURE UP Parents, educators lobby for change in state accountability system by Joanna Cattanach
eated around a table at Mangia Pizza on Mesa Road in Austin in 2011, a handful of working moms decided they wanted to change the way standardized testing is done in Texas public schools. They didn’t know where to start or how, but like so many frustrated parents, they were fed up with Texas’ testbased accountability system. These parents believed the system had turned teachers into test-prep tutors, placing undue pressure on schools and students. Theresa Trevino, a child psychologist and mother of two, was among the group of parents who met that night in Austin. She and others later formed Texans Advocating for Meaningful Student AsTheresa Trevino sessment (TAMSA), a grassroots organization made up of parents from across the state. “Yes, we are soccer moms and band moms and debate moms, but when it comes to the serious business of changing a law that directly affects our children, we are all business, and we mean what we say and we’ve got the facts and the data to back it,” Trevino said in a telephone interview from her Austin home a week before Gov. Rick Perry signed into law on June 10 the bill for which she and others lobbied. House Bill 5: • reduces the number of end-of-course exams (EOCs) for students in grades
Texas School Business • July / August 2013
9-12 from 15 to 5; eliminates the provision that EOCs count for 15 percent of a student’s final grade; eliminates the requirement that high school students must take four years of math and science. Instead, students must complete a foundation curriculum that includes four credits in English; three credits each in science, social studies and math; two foreign language credits, one fine arts credit, one P.E. credit and five elective credits.
It was a victory for Trevino and the thousands of concerned parents who rallied in front of the state Capitol in T-shirts that begged questions like: “Would you want a single test to determine 15 percent of your salary?” and “Would you want to spend 42 days of your work year on an evaluation?” They also held signs that declared: “I’m more than a test score!” and “More teaching, less testing!” TAMSA members also met with legislators and gave witness testimony before countless committees. “I want to do something that helps not just my own kids but all the kids in Texas,” said Trevino, who chaired a committee at her child’s school prior to getting involved with the statewide organization. “I did not ever expect that I would be going to the Capitol and participating in the rallies and becoming this grassroots organizer. I never imagined I would be stomp-
ing the steps of the Capitol for the past five months.” But she did, and so did other TAMSA members. They also built a website, organized call-ins, made sure at least one TAMSA member attended every hearing regarding testing during the legislative session and called upon the more than 5,000 members on the TAMSA Facebook page for their support. “If anyone has the power to change something, it’s parents,” said Trevino, who points to Mothers Against Drunk Driving as an example. Indeed, former Texas Education Agency Commissioner Robert Scott dubbed TAMSA the “Mothers Against Drunk Testing.” Whatever you want to call the group, TAMSA’s power is palpable, according to Alief ISD Superintendent HD Chambers. More than 800 Texas school districts, representing 4.3 million HD Chambers public school students, adopted the Texas Association of School Administrators’ resolution calling for changes in the current testing system, which it says “is strangling our public schools, imposing relentless test preparation and memorization, and is stealing the love of learning from [our] students.” However, it took moms and the relentless online and in-person efforts of grassroots groups, such TAMSA and Save
Texas Schools, to grab the media’s attention that of the legislators — specifically, the lawmakers who had approved increasing the number of high school exit exams from 4 to 15 back in 2007. Chambers, who has worked closely with TAMSA, is among the “super supers” the group cites as an outspoken advocate for meaningful change. According to Chambers, many parents in Alief ISD share TAMSA’s concerns. He said parents of children in the lower grades often would tell him: “My kid is being turned into a little test-taking robot.” Others were concerned that the classroom learning taking place wasn’t substantive enough or relevant to college- and career-readiness. Moms weren’t the only ones frustrated with the fixation on test taking, said Chambers, which is why he, along with other Harris County superintendents, submitted a white paper to state education officials this past year that called for “reasonable, effective and meaningful reductions in tests.” With help from the staffs of the Speaker’s Office and the House education committee, as well as the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Jimmie Don Aycock, R-Killeen, the recommendations on what tests should be included and what tests should be eliminated became part of the language of HB 5. HB 5 affects students at the high school level and enables schools to offer a more diverse selection of courses. Chambers is especially keen on schools offering different pathways to graduation — pathways that will accommodate and prepare students who may not be entering a four-year college after graduation but who choose to enter the workforce, pursue a trade, or enroll in community college or a technical school. Critics say that diverse pathways to graduation will disproportionately affect poor and minority children who won’t be as prepared for a four-year college under the new plan. They also claim that testing pushes students to achieve more. Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams has said repeatedly: “We treasure what we measure.” Yet, despite what the critics say, an increasing numbers of public education stakeholders – from parents to administrators to teachers – are raising their voices and speaking out against the current system. Hudson ISD Superintendent Mary Ann Whiteker, another member of TAMSA’s “super supers,” said her efforts to
Valedictorians and salutatorians surround Alief ISD Superintendent HD Chambers.
change the testing system in Texas began two years ago during a meeting with fellow East Texas superintendents. In what she called an “a-ha moment,” Mary Ann Whiteker said she reWhiteker dedicated her life to education and pledged to end the “shameful” testing practices she once helped enforce. “I have seen fifth graders covered in hives, children throwing up in the hall,” said Whiteker, who has been a superintendent for 20 years. “I have seen children in the car crying because they didn’t want to go inside [to take the tests] or in a principal’s lap saying, ‘I just want to go home.’ That is criminal.” That is why, with the school board’s approval, Whiteker had all the plaques and banners taken down at the district’s schools this past year — all those visual markers that proclaimed an academic ranking issued by the state. These rankings would no longer be the focal point at school, figuratively or literally. She also gave a directive to teachers not to mention STARR or EOCs to students or parents. “I have had many, many parents thank me for the stand we have taken with our students,” she said. “This year when we began the regimen of testing, the stu-
dents were probably more relaxed than in the past because we have not preached that test all year.” Chambers said there is still work to be done. TAMSA has been taking a break through the summer, but its members have pledged to continue to stay involved in the implementation of HB 5 and to attend both State Board of Education and TEA meetings. They are pleased with the bill’s passage, said Trevino. Whiteker said she intends to stay focused on meaningful assessments and quality education. She said her district supports her efforts to change the testing culture. Whiteker told thousands of parents, educators and fellow testing advocates who gathered at the state Capitol back in February for the Save Texas Schools rally that pressuring children to pass a test at the expense of a quality education is a practice that must stop. “I have used children to make ratings on a campus, to buy banners for a wall, plaques for a teacher and evaluate personnel. That is shameful and I will do it no longer,” she declared. “I, my school board, my staff, my community, we do not treasure a test.” JOANNA CATTANACH is a freelance writer and journalism instructor in Dallas.
July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
ISD and has worked in the transportation field for 18 years.
WHO’S NEWS continued from page 15
Del Valle ISD Steven Alves has been tapped to serve as head women’s basketball coach at Del Valle High School, moving up from his previous position as associate basketball coach. He is a graduate of Del Valle High and holds a bachelor’s degree from St. Edward’s Steven Alves University in Austin. He has taught government at the school since 2005. Lloyd Burton is now head football coach at Del Valle High School, coming to the district from Fort Bend ISD, where he spent eight years as defensive coordinator at Dulles High. He Lloyd Burton played football at Syracuse University in New York, where he earned his bachelor’s degree, and for the NFL and European League. The new assistant director of transportation is Zorna Jackson. She was most recently with Austin Zorna Jackson
Dripping Springs ISD Diane Bernero has been appointed principal of Rooster Springs Elementary School, coming to Texas from the Cherry Creek school district in Colorado, where she was executive director of elementary education. She has more than 30 years’ experience as an educator, beginning with 14 years as a classroom teacher at several elementary grade levels and as a special
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Denton ISD Gwen Perkins, who had been serving as principal of Crownover Middle School, is now the district’s director of professional personnel. She has been with Denton ISD for seven years, leading Crownover since 2009. In addition, she has been associate principal of Denton High School, a high school assistant principal in Keller ISD, and a high school teacher and coordinator. She has a bachelor’s degree in business education from Louisiana Tech University and a master’s degree in educational leadership policy from The University of Texas at Arlington. She is at work on her doctorate in applied technology from the University of North Texas. Returning to Denton ISD to lead Crownover Middle School as principal is Jason Rainey, who was the school’s assistant principal from 2009 until 2012, when he joined McKinney ISD as McKinney High School’s campus instructional leader in math and testing coordinator. Previously at Crownover, he was the campus testing coordinator and the facilitator for Professional Learning Communities. He also was the summer school principal for the district’s secondary programs. Prior to working in Denton ISD and McKinney ISD, he taught, coached and was a new teacher mentor in Al-
len ISD, where he also was Allen High School’s summer school principal. Rainey received his bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University and his master’s degree in education administration from Lamar University. The new principal of Lee Elementary School is Lorena Salas, who has been with the district for 12 years. She has been assistant principal of Ryan Elementary for the past year and previously spent seven years as assistant principal of Wilson Elementary. She was summer school principal in 2010 and 2011 for preK and kindergarten. In addition, she has been an adjunct professor at the University of North Texas for three years. From 2005 to 2007, she was the district’s bilingual/ESL elementary coordinator and taught second and third grades at Wilson Elementary. Before coming to Denton, Salas taught in Lewisville ISD. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Texas Woman’s University.
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education teacher in four Colorado school districts. She took her first administrative role in Cherry Creek as an assistant principal. She then spent 10 years as a principal at two different elementary campuses before being promoted to Diane Bernero director of student achievement services. Rhonda Whitman, former principal of Rooster Springs Elementary School, is now with the district’s Curriculum and Instruction Department. Ennis ISD
The new athletic director is Jack Alvarez, who came to Ennis ISD in 2011 after serving as head coach and athletic director in Kirbyville ISD. Bill Cox, who has served the district for 49 years, the past 23 as athletJack Alvarez ic director, retired at the end of the school year. During his time with Ennis ISD, Ennis High School won three state football championships and one state title in track. He was on the coaching staff that won the Texas state football title in Bill Cox 1975. David Kirkpatrick, most recently Ennis ISD’s girls’ basketball coach, is now serving as assistant athletic director for girls’ David Kirkpatrick programs. ESC Region 1 Cornelio Gonzales, most recently superintendent of Mission Consolidated School District, is the new executive director. He brings more than 30 years of experience to his new position, having been a teacher, campus and central office administraCornelio Gonzales tor, superintendent and employee of the Texas Education Agency. Flatonia ISD Beverly Mikulenka, most recently the district’s assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction, is now serving as interim superintendent. She began her career in Bryan ISD as a fifth and sixth grade language arts teacher, then joined Northside ISD as a seventh grade read-
ing teacher. She transferred to La Vernia ISD in 1996, where she served as an elementary school assistant principal, primary school principal and grants consultant. She came to Flatonia ISD in 2007, working as a dyslexia coordinator, Beverly special programs coordiMikulenka nator and secondary principal. Mikulenka, who earned her bachelor’s degree in education curriculum and instruction from Texas A&M University, holds a master’s degree in educational administration from Texas A&M University at Kingsville. Fort Bend ISD Joe Chandler, now principal of Willowridge High School, most recently held the top job at Garcia Middle School. He began his career as a teacher in Los Fresnos CISD in Brownsville in 1996 and then was a teacher and department chair at Alief ISD’s Elsik High. He then took on the role of assistant principal of Hastings High School in that district in 2005. He joined Fort Bend ISD in 2009 as associate principal of Willowridge. Chandler, who earned his bachelor’s degree from St. Meinrad College in Indiana, holds a master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Houston. Frisco ISD The new principal of Boals Elementary School is Christina Beran, who had been assistant principal of Phillips Elementary. She came to Frisco ISD in 1999 as a third grade teacher and has 15 years of experience as an educator, including nine as an administrator. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Tarleton State University and her master’s degree from the University of North Texas. Wes Cunningham has been appointed area director for secondary instruction, a newly created position. He has been an educator for 20 years, 11 of those as an administrator. He joined Frisco ISD in 2004 as a high school assistant principal and has been director of career and technical education (CTE) and principal of the CTE Center since 2007. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Southern Methodist University and master’s and doctoral degrees from Texas A&M University at Commerce. Anna Koenig, who was most recently principal of Boals Elementary School, is the district’s new director of elementary personnel. She has been an educator for 22 years, working as a teacher and assistant principal prior to opening Boals in 2003. She has been with Frisco ISD since 1998. Koenig earned her bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University, and her master’s degree is from the University of North Texas. Taking the reins as principal of the Career and Technical Education Center is Dianna Manuel, who spent the past seven years as assistant principal of that campus. Prior to that, she
taught for eight years in Frisco ISD and seven in Clear Creek ISD. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University at Commerce and a master’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University. The new principal of Ogle Elementary is Phyllis Pope, who had been serving as the school’s assistant principal. She began her career 17 years ago as a teacher, going on to work in administration in Killeen and Round Rock ISDs. She came to Frisco ISD in 2008 as assistant principal at Anderson Elementary and also has held that position at the Early Childhood School. Pope received her bachelor’s degree from Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina and her master’s degree from Tarleton State University. Marcia Shannon, most recently assistant director for elementary special education services in Plano ISD, has been named Frisco ISD’s director of special education. She has been a special education coordinator in Plano and Highland Park ISDs and has worked as a teacher, diagnostician and instructional specialist during her 18 years in education. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University). Laurie Tinsley has been named an area director of elementary education. She has spent 23 of her 28 years in education as an administrator. She came to the district in 2006 to open Ogle Elementary as principal, remaining in that position until taking on her new job. Tinsley has a bachelor’s degree from The University of Texas and a master’s degree from Texas A&M University at Commerce. Mike Waldrip is Frisco ISD’s new deputy superintendent. He has spent 31 years as a teacher, coach, assistant principal, principal, director and assistant superintendent. He came to Frisco ISD in 2002 and joined the district’s instructional support team in 2012. Waldrip, who received his bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University and his master’s degree from Sul Ross State University, earned his doctoral degree from the University of North Texas. A number of associate and assistant principals have been named. They are: • Amy Baker, assistant principal, Smith Elementary School; • Bethany Birdwell, assistant principal, Stafford Middle School; • Paige French, assistant principal, Staley Middle School; • Christy Garza, assistant principal, Taylor Elementary School; • Karen LeCocq, associate principal, Liberty High School; • Chris Mogan, associate principal, Wakeland High School; • Kendall Still, assistant principal, Liberty High School; See WHO’S NEWS on page 22 July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
Head of maintenance Charles Clark cleans up nicely with national honor by Raven L. Hill
urst-Euless-Bedford ISD expects everyone — from the principal to the custodian — to do their part in helping students make it to graduation day. Longtime Trinity High School custodian Charles Clark, 64, is holding up his end of the deal. A role model and mentor to many students over the years, he received the grand prize in National Life Group’s LifeChanger of the Year Award program. Principal Mike Harris nominated Clark. The LifeChanger award honors those who have exhibited a proven ability to
make a beneficial difference in students’ lives and positively add to the development of the school’s atmosphere, while showing leadership in school and district activities, a proven record of excellent performance at the professional level and a commitment to producing a nurturing atmosphere. Clark, a deeply spiritual Mississippi native who humbly downplays the honor, doesn’t run a formal mentoring program. He describes his approach as “nothing in particular” and prides himself on being a friendly face with a God-given talent to reach others.
Superintendent Steve Chapman (right) presents an honorary plaque to Charles Clark, head of maintenance at Trinity High School.
Texas School Business • July / August 2013
“I try to motivate those who don’t have confidence,” he says. “In the cafeteria, I look for someone whose head is down or needs a pat on the back.” After 24 years of working in the district, word has gotten around. “All of the kids know me,” he says. “Pretty much everyone tells kids that if they need someone to talk to or someone to keep you out of trouble, find Mr. Clark and he’ll help you out.” Clark grew up in Hattiesburg, Miss. He moved to Texas in 1967 to study business law at Nationwide Business College in Dallas. Two years later, he got married and moved to Fort Worth. He left college to find full-time work. By 1989, he was working as a truck driver and his wife, Ellen, was ready for him to get off the road. One day, he tagged along with a friend who went to district headquarters to fill out a job application. Clark decided that he might as well complete one also. When he got the job, Clark figured it would tide him over until something better came along. “Twenty-four years later, I’m still looking for something better,” he quips. Clark can rattle off names of those he has kept in touch with — or kept on the right path over the years — like some people recite the alphabet: Anthony, Brian, Chase, Demarcus. Clark speaks with pride about Trinity High School football standout Ryan McBean — not just McBean’s Super Bowl ring but his college degree. Trinity’s campus is pretty diverse; about 40 percent Caucasian with minority student percentages at around 20 percent and a growing Asian student population. “Here, we realize that it takes a village,” Clark says. “We use every resource that we have. Principals, teachers’ aides, custodians — doesn’t matter who
it is. We use everything at our disposal to make these kids successful.” On graduation day, he recites students’ names as they cross the stage. He speaks to various classes throughout the school year, encouraging students to do well in school. He and his wife even took in a student once when he fell on hard times. He has worked at the high school for 22 out of his 24 years with the district. Clark says that he’s particularly interested in helping young men who may not have a positive male influence along the path to adulthood. His father is 95 years old. “I can see how important my father has been in my life,” Clark says. “You can tell when you are making a positive impact in a young man’s life. You get him graduated and it just goes on and on.” It took a while for him to realize the magnitude of the LifeChanger award, which came with a $10,000 prize to split with Trinity High School. “Awards are embarrassing to me,” he admits. “I do this because this is what I do. I don’t think you should get trophies or plaques when you enjoy it as much as I do.” Trinity students sent him congratulatory messages on winning the award. One note was from a student he didn’t know, a young woman who was dealing with personal problems. “She wrote: ‘You don’t know who I am, but my sophomore year, it was your “Hello, good morning, how are you?” that made me want to come to school the next day.’” Though he’s not a millionaire, Clark says he believes that he’s been richly rewarded: On Father’s Day, though he only has three children, he got 16 cards, mostly from students who thanked him for being a father figure. “I’ve got a wonderful life,” Clark says. “Only God can give a human being what I have. At the end of the day, if I was a billionaire, I couldn’t be any more pleased with the man that my mother and father turned out.”
Fun Facts about Charles Clark A skill I haven’t tried but would like to learn: Skiing Four guests (living or deceased) I would invite to my fantasy dinner party: Wife, father, mother and son Type of music or performing artist I really enjoy: Bruno Mars A bad habit I would love to break: Eating ice cream late at night Best piece of advice I’ve received so far: Don’t get so hung up on the things you don’t have. Learn to enjoy what you do have. (Advice given from his father.)
Center for Advanced Professional Studies (CAPS) Blue Valley Unified School District 229
RAVEN HILL is a freelance journalist and a former education reporter for the Austin American-Statesman.
July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
WHO’S NEWS continued from page 19
• • •
Jeff Robertson, assistant principal, Frisco High School; Keith Tolleson, assistant principal, Lone Star High School; and Janet Wyatt, associate principal, Frisco High School.
Galena Park ISD Dawn Alvarez has been chosen to serve as the district’s program director for secondary science and health. She was most recently an instructional coach in Humble ISD, where she worked since 2009. Prior to that assignment, she worked with Dawn Alvarez the accelerated graduation program at College Station ISD and as a secondary science teacher at Bryan ISD’s discipline alternative school. Alvarez earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Denver and her master’s degree in educational administration from Texas A&M University. The district has named Grace Devost as the new principal of Green Valley Elementary School. After earning her bachelor’s degree in education from Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University) and a master’s degree in educaGrace Devost tional management from the University of Houston at Clear Lake, she began her career as a teacher at MacArthur Elementary School. She next was
assistant principal of Woodland Acres Elementary and then took on the position of principal of Pyburn Elementary, where she remained until accepting her new role. Judy Holbrook has been appointed senior director of elementary curriculum. She has been with the district for 25 years, most recently as principal of Tice Elementary School. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Sam Houston State UniverJudy Holbrook sity and her master’s degree in administration and supervision from the University of Houston. The district’s new executive director of school improvement is Ella Moreaux, who comes to the district from Channelview ISD, where she spent three years as director of federal programs and four years as coordinator of federal programs and student assessment. Prior to Ella Moreaux that, she was an elementary assistant principal, Title I family involvement coordinator, and third grade math and science teacher in Goose Creek CISD. Moreaux received her bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from Stephen F. Austin State University and her master’s degree in educational management from the University of Houston at Clear Lake. Glasscock County ISD The new superintendent is Thomas Weeaks, who was most recently superintendent of
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Dew ISD. Initially a teacher and basketball, football and track coach at Shepard Middle School in South San Antonio ISD, he went on to serve in the same capacity in Poth ISD and in McMullen County ISD, where he also was athletic coordinator. He was a teacher and head girls’ basketball and cross country/track coach in Moulton, Liberty Hill and Gregory-Portland ISDs. He then spent five years as head women’s basketball coach at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio. Weeaks then returned to Moulton ISD as the district’s elementary physical education teacher and then as the elementary and ultimately the high school principal. He joined Dew ISD in 2008. Weeaks earned his master’s degree in education from Texas A&M University at Kingsville. Gonzales ISD A new principal has been chosen to lead Gonzales High School. He is Dwight MacAllister, who has been serving as interim principal since February. Prior to that assignment, he was Gonzales High’s FOCUS Redirector Inclusion teacher. He began his career in Tenaha ISD as a social studies teacher and football coach, working in that capacity for 27 years. He took his first administrative position in 1992 as athletic director of El Paso’s Canutillo ISD. He then spent four years as a high school principal in Weimar ISD and three years in that position in Jarrell ISD. He joined Gonzales ISD in 2005. MacAllister, who earned his bachelor’s degree in physical education from The University of Texas, holds a master’s degree in school administration from Stephen F. Austin State University. Hallsville ISD Hallsville North Elementary Principal Cristi Parsons was named 2013’s Texas National Distinguished Principal of the Year by the Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association. She was awarded a $10,000 check and will represent Texas at the National Cristi Parsons Distinguished Principals program in Washington, D.C. in October. Hers was one of 74 nominations received by TEPSA. A product of Hallsville schools, Parsons has been a principal in the district since 2007. Hamilton ISD New Superintendent Clay Tarpley comes to Hamilton ISD from Throckmorton ISD, where he also held the top job. Happy ISD The district begins the new school year with Wade Wesley as superintendent. He was formerly the high school principal in Petrolia ISD. After earning his bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University, he taught math and
coached football and track in Pampa ISD for seven years. He next was athletic director and head football coach at Glasscock County ISD. During his tenure there, he earned his master’s degree in educational leadership from Sul Ross State University. Hart’s Bluff ISD The new superintendent is Lyle DuBus, who was most recently an assistant superintendent in Grand Prairie ISD. Hawley ISD A new superintendent is in place for the district. He is Michael Sibberson, who was principal of Killeen High School in Killeen ISD for 11 years before accepting his new job. Hays County CISD A new assistant superintendent for human resources is in place for the upcoming academic year. David Hartz comes to his new job from Little Rock, Ark., public schools, where he was associate superintendent for human resources. Prior to that, he spent 10 years in senior poDavid Hartz sitions at Texas State University. The district’s new superintendent is Michael McKie. He comes to his new position from Fort Bend ISD, where he was interim superintendent. An educator with more than 30 years of experience, he spent most of his career in that district, serving as a teacher, assistant princiMichael McKie pal, principal and assistant superintendent. McKie earned his bachelor’s degree from Northern Michigan University and his master’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University. Highland Park ISD Jerry Sutterfield retired in the spring from his position as the district’s athletic director for women’s sports, but he has accepted a new part-time position in the district as coordinator for student integrity and compliance. In his new job, he will design and implement programs that promote responsibility and accountability for students in seventh to 12th grades. Sutterfield began his career in 1979 in Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD as an industrial arts and physical education teacher and came to Highland Park ISD in 1985 in the same capacity. He has coached middle school football, basketball, track and field, and cross country. He was 1999’s National High School Girls’ Cross Country Coach of the Year, and his teams won a record nine UIL 4-A state championships.
Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD Joe Harrington is the district’s newly appointed assistant superintendent of secondary education. He comes to the district from Colleyville ISD ,where he spent the past year as principal of Heritage High School. Prior to that, he was with Northwest ISD for nine years as an assistant principal at the high school and middle school levels and associate principal for curriculum and instruction. Michael Sandoval returns to the district as principal of Bellaire Elementary School. Most recently principal of Eagle Mountain Elementary School in Eagle MountainSaginaw ISD, he began his career as a teacher in El Paso ISD. He then spent Michael Sandoval a year with Hurst-EulessBedford ISD as a teacher at North Euless Elementary. He was with Birdville ISD from 1998 to 2012. Sandoval, who earned his bachelor’s degree from The University of Texas at El Paso and his master’s degree in education from the University of North Texas, holds a doctorate in education from Walden University. Mary Stokic has been appointed to serve as assistant superintendent for elementary administration. Now an educator for 33 years, she began as an elementary P.E. and high school volleyball and tennis coach in Commerce ISD. She then moved to Burleson ISD, Mary Stokic where she taught elementary school for nine years. She joined the dis-
trict in 1991, teaching at North Euless Elementary School for 10 years and then at Oakwood Terrace Elementary for a year. She was assistant principal of River Trails Elementary from 2002 to 2007 and principal there until 2011. She has been principal of Bellaire Elementary School since that time. Stokic, who has a bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University at Commerce, earned her master’s degree from The University of Texas at Arlington. Sarah Williams is the new principal of Midway Park Elementary School. She has been with the district since 2000, beginning as a teacher and going on to serve as assistant principal of Lakewood Elementary. Next, she was assistant principal of Shady Brook Elementary. She has Sarah Williams spent the past two years as an instructional specialist at Spring Garden Elementary. Williams earned her bachelor’s degree from McMurry University and her master’s degree from The University of Texas at Arlington. Hutto ISD The district has replaced its former system of separate boys’ and girls’ athletics coordinator and hired its first athletics director. Steven Van Meter, who served as athletics director of Friendswood ISD and as head football coach of Friendswood High School, Steven Van Meter had retired in 2012 after a 20year tenure. See WHO’S NEWS on page 25
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July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
Texas ASCD PRESIDENT profile The forecast looks favorable for New Diana ISD’s Carl Key by Elizabeth Millard When Carl Key was a kid, he knew exactly what his career path would involve: becoming a meteorologist. In fifth grade, while his family was living in Dallas, he would call the local television station and give rain reports. He was thrilled when, after high school graduation, he enrolled in Texas A&M University’s renowned meteorology program. But like a summer storm that comes on quickly, a shift in temperature made a huge difference in Key’s future. That alteration came when a hiring freeze on government agencies in the 1980s stopped
the flow of new meteorologists into the National Weather Service, and Key was forced to re-evaluate his career path. Because his mother was a teacher and math coach and Key enjoyed helping her with classes, education seemed like an ideal second pick. After obtaining a degree in education in 1985, Key landed at Hughes Springs ISD, where he spent 10 years as a math and science teacher. When an administration position opened in 1994, he became assistant high school principal. A year later, he took on the principal role.
New Diana ISD Superintendent Carl Key leads Texas ASCD. 24
Texas School Business • July / August 2013
“The timing was fortuitous because, at that point, I needed a transition in my professional life,” he admits. “Ten years of teaching was enough for me.” Key continued to shift positions at Hughes Springs ISD. He became director of technology and eventually the assistant superintendent for curriculum and instructional technology. In that role, he relished being able to work with teachers and administrators to identify challenges in the curriculum. He also managed federal grant programs that helped take the district to a higher level. But much like the shift from teaching to administration, he knew when it was time for another change. “I felt like I hit my head on the ceiling at the district,” he recalls. “I knew there was more to learn and experience, so I began looking at larger districts.” He landed at Allen ISD as an academic coordinator for two years before taking on the deputy superintendent position at Greenville ISD for six years. Today he is the superintendent of New Diana ISD. Key says he believes there’s a common theme to his leadership style, no matter the job title: teamwork. “I try to be the leader who emphasizes that it’s never about me,” he says. “I want to put the people around me in the forefront; I want them to be recognized for all the good that they do. At this point, I’m approaching my 29th year in education, and I’ve seen a number of leadership styles. The ones that work best are those that emphasize a team approach.” That perspective should inject fresh energy into his newest role as the president of the Texas Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development (Texas ASCD), which he took on in June. Part of the organization’s strategic plan is transformational governance, Key says, and he’s eager to continue along that path.
Fun Facts about Carl Key For my dream vacation, I would travel to: Switzerland or New Zealand. A bad habit I would like to break is: drinking Diet Coke. A little-known fact about me is: My great uncle used to raise tobacco in eastern Kentucky, so when I was a kid, I used to help in the tobacco fields in the summer. My favorite flavor of ice cream is: cookies & cream.
“Education is probably guilty of latching onto buzzwords, and ‘transformation’ is one of those,” he says, “but it can still be powerful.” Texas ASCD is centered on providing quality staff development, resources and leadership, and recently the organization made a big push for legislative reform at the state and national levels. For example, the organization lobbied aggressively in favor of certain components of House Bill 5. Among other measures, the legislation, which Gov. Perry signed into law, drops the number of required end-of-course exams and includes overhauls to graduation requirements. “That type of focus on governance is one of the things that I hope to continue as president,” Key says. “We want to be the go-to organization for that, as well as push forward on staff development issues.” Whether working at the district level or state level, Key says he loves the job he does today. “Sometimes you get to the point where you just love coming into work every day,” he says. “That’s where I am.” Although Key has nearly three decades of education experience and relishes his position at New Diana ISD, there’s still a part of his heart that will always belong to the meteorology world. “I don’t call in my rain reports any more,” he says, with a laugh. “But I admit, the first thing I do every morning is check the weather.” ELIZABETH MILLARD is a freelance journalist who also writes for District Administration.
WHO’S NEWS continued from page 23
Irving ISD Clint Roddy is the district’s new athletic director. He most recently was assistant athletic director in Dallas ISD, where he served since 2007. He began his career in 1997 as a coach and faculty member at Navarro College. He then was a teacher and coach at Dallas ISD’s Clint Roddy Smith High School, going on to become head football coach and athletic coordinator at Seagoville High School, also in Dallas ISD. He earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Texas Tech University and his master’s degree in education from The University of Texas at Tyler.
experience as an educator, including teaching high school business, serving as student activities director, high school curriculum director, and elementary school principal. She was most recently the district’s director of secondary curriculum and professional development. The new principal of Timber Ridge Elementary School is Julie Crabtree. She has been a middle school math teacher, a campus and district instructional specialist, and an associate principal. With Dallas ISD, she was principal of Titche Elementary. Manor Middle School now has Jennifer Washington as principal. Formerly Killeen ISD’s director of student, district and community relations, she has also worked as an assistant principal, high school associate principal and middle school principal.
Keene ISD A new superintendent is in place for the 2013-2014 academic year. He is Ricky Stephens, who comes to his new job from Mineola ISD, where he was principal of Mineola High School.
Koutze ISD Former interim Superintendent Reese Briggs is now the district’s superintendent. He had been serving in a temporary capacity since December. Prior to joining Koutze ISD, Briggs was principal of Cleveland Middle School in Cleveland ISD and head football coach in Deweyville and Splendora ISDs.
Killeen ISD Susan Buckley has been named principal of Killeen High School. She has 20 years’
Lake Travis ISD A new girls’ basketball head coach has See WHO’S NEWS on page 26
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WHO’S NEWS continued from page 23
been chosen for Lake Travis High School. He is Patrick Hinson, who began his career in 2003 at Westbury Christian High School in Houston, where he was a science teacher and coach. In 2005, he joined Pflugerville ISD as a science teacher and track and field, basketball, and volleyball coach at Pflugerville Middle School. Most recently, he was a science teacher and girls’ varsity basketball assistant coach at Pflugerville High School. Hinson’s bachelor’s degree in biology and chemistry was received from Freed-Hardeman University in Henderson, Tenn. He will complete his master’s degree in educational administration from Concordia University in Austin this summer. Lamar CISD Williams Elementary School will have Belynda Billings as assistant principal at the start of the new academic year. A graduate of the University of Houston at Victoria, she received her master’s degree from Prairie View A&M University. She Belynda Billings has been an educator for 19 years, including seven years as a teacher in Lamar CISD and Wharton ISD and 13 years as an interventionist/facilitator in Sealy ISD and Lamar CISD. She was most recently the math facilitator at Briscoe Junior High. Laura Haugvoll is now principal of Beasley Elementary School. She has been an administrator for seven years and was most recently assistant principal of Bowie Elementary. She spent 13 years as a teacher in Fort Bend and Katy ISDs. She Laura Haugvoll earned her bachelor’s degree from Sam Houston State University and her master’s degree from the University of St. Thomas. The new assistant principal of Hutchison Elementary School is Dana Maresh. She is a graduate of Texas A&M University and received her master’s degree from Lamar University. An educator for 15 years, she taught for 10 years in Lamar CISD and Needville and Dana Maresh Bryan ISDs. She also spent five years as a facilitator in Lamar CISD. She was most recently math facilitator at Meyer Elementary and was the district’s 2011 Elementary Teacher of the Year.
Texas School Business • July / August 2013
Lewisville ISD Deanne Angonia has been promoted from assistant principal to principal of Killian Middle School. She has been with Lewisville ISD for 15 years, serving as a fourth grade teacher at Southridge Elementary and as a teacher of Texas history, reading, English, geography, math and study skills at Huffines Middle School. She was also an instructional specialist at Huffines. Angonia earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Texas A&M University and her master’s degree in educational administration from the University of North Texas. The district has announced that Matthew Garrett will serve as the district’s first safety and security officer. Most recently the assistant emergency management coordinator for the city of Richardson, he also was an emergency management specialist for the city of Dallas. He is a certified emergency manager and a graduate of the University of North Texas. Sharon Heier has been named principal of Timber Creek Elementary School. She comes to her new job from Birdville ISD, where she was the district’s special services coordinator and principal of Watauga Elementary, as well as assistant principal of Hardeman Elementary and a teacher at Mullendore and Binion elementary schools. A graduate of Texas Woman’s University with a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies and a master’s degree in education administration, Heier earned her doctorate in administrative leadership from Walden University. She has been an educator for 20 years. The new principal of Central Elementary School is Cynthia Jaird. She comes to her new position from College Street Elementary, where she also was principal. Degan Elementary School will start the new academic year with Vanessa Stuart as principal. She comes to Lewisville ISD from Wylie ISD, where she was a third grade teacher at Birmingham Elementary, an assistant principal at Hartman and Birmingham elementary schools and the district’s curriculum coordinator. She has been an educator for 21 years, also working as a fourth and fifth grade teacher in Lubbock ISD and as an educational diagnostician at Collin County’s Special Education Cooperative. A graduate of West Texas State University (now West Texas A&M University) with a degree in multidisciplinary studies, she holds a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Texas Tech University. Amy Teddy will lead Indian Creek Elementary School as principal when the new school year begins. She was most recently assistant principal of Coyote Ridge Elementary. She has been with Lewisville ISD since 2007, also serving as assistant principal at Stewart’s Creek Elementary. She began her career in 1999 at Carrollton-Farmers Branch as an ESL teacher at Bush Middle School. Teddy earned her bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from Stephen F. Austin State University and her mas-
ter’s degree in educational administration from the University of North Texas. Little Elm ISD Matthew Gutierrez has joined Little Elm ISD as the district’s director of human resources. He most recently held the same position in Round Rock ISD. Before becoming a central office administrator, he was principal of Hay Branch Elementary School in Killeen ISD and assistant principal of Rawlinson Middle School in San Antonio’s Northside ISD. Gutierrez earned his bachelor’s degree from Angelo State University and his master’s degree in educational administration from Schreiner University in Kerrville. He is a doctoral candidate at Texas Tech University. Lone Oak ISD The district’s new superintendent, Lance Campbell, was most recently superintendent of Cumby ISD. He began his career in 1991, spending a year teaching P.E. and coaching in Mesquite ISD. He next taught social studies and coached basketball, Lance Campbell football and track in Wylie ISD, moving to Munday ISD in the same capacity two years later. He then was a teacher and coach in Priddy and IraanSheffield ISDs, before taking his first administrative position as principal and athletic director in Sam Rayburn ISD, from 2004 to 2008. He next was a principal in Whitewright ISD for a year, before becoming superintendent in Cumby in 2009. Campbell earned his bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University at Commerce and his master’s degree in education from Tarleton State University. He is a doctoral candidate at Texas A&M University at Commerce. Lubbock ISD Kelly Trlica, the district’s chief academic officer, retired at the end of the school year. She came to Lubbock ISD from Houston ISD, where she was assistant superintendent of secondary curriculum, instruction and assessment. She was principal of Galveston ISD’s Ball High School and Friendswood ISD’s Friendswood Junior High. She also supervised principals in La Porte ISD. She was a social studies teacher for 13 years before becoming an administrator. Trlica, who earned her bachelor’s degree in political science and master’s degree in education from Sam Houston State University, holds a doctorate from Baylor University in educational administration. District trustees have selected longtime West Texas educator Berhl Robertson as superintendent. He has served as interim superintendent since April. Prior to that, he was the district’s chief administrative officer, coming to Lubbock ISD in 2009 after serving as superin-
tendent of Southland and Roosevelt ISDs. He was named ESC Region 17’s Superintendent of the Year in 2003. Marshall ISD Tiffany Best, who had been serving as Marshall High School’s Mavettes director and testing director, is now that school’s assistant principal. She has been with Marshall ISD since 2004. She holds a bachelor’s degree in education from East Texas Baptist University and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Stephen F. Austin State University. Larry Davis, an assistant principal since 2007 with Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD, is the new principal of Marshall High School. He also has been a teacher and administrator at Saginaw High School, Dallas ISD’s Lincoln High School and Arlington ISD’s Martin High. Davis earned his associate degree in communication from The University of Texas at Arlington and his master’s degree in education from Texas Woman’s University. Melissa McIntosh returns to Marshall ISD after serving as assistant superintendent of Jefferson ISD since 2009. She is now Marshall High’s academic dean. Previously, she was an assistant principal and principal in that district. She also was a fourth grade teacher at South Marshall Elementary School and was the district’s curriculum and instructional specialist. She has a bachelor’s degree in education from East Texas Baptist University and a master’s degree in educational administration from Texas A&M University at Texarkana. McKinney ISD The new Boyd High School head basketball coach is Jason Burton, who comes to McKinney from Texas State University, where he spent the past two years as an assistant basketball coach. Prior to that, he served in the same capacity at Texas A&M University at Commerce. During that time, he also was an adjunct instructor in the College of Business and Technology. Gordon Butler has been selected to serve as the district’s director of program evaluation. He was most recently an assistant principal at McKinney High School. He came to McKinney in 2012 from Midlothian ISD, where he was assistant principal of Walnut Grove Middle School for three years. Prior to that, he taught world geography and U.S. history at the Excel Charter Academy in Boston, Mass., and ESL at Bowie and Cochran elementary schools in Dallas ISD. A graduate of The University of Texas at Arlington with a bachelor’s degree in communications, he has a master’s degree in educational administration from Texas A&M University at Commerce. Judith Coffman is now the district’s director of bilingual/ESL programs. A native of Cuba, she has been an educator for 20 years, beginning as a bilingual instructional assistant at the Laurel School in Whittier, Calif. She continued her career as a classroom teacher and out-
reach consultant in that state before coming to Texas in 2002 as a bilingual kindergarten teacher in Plano ISD. She then moved to Allen ISD to work as an ESL and bilingual classroom teacher and bilingual instructional specialist. She took her first administrative position in 2007 in Lovejoy ISD as an assistant principal at Lovejoy Elementary and then returned to Allen ISD in 2008 as assistant principal at Vaughan Elementary. She spent the past four years as principal of Story Elementary School in that district. Coffman’s bachelor’s degree in history was earned from the University of California at Irvine and her master’s degree in educational leadership from Dallas Baptist University. The district’s new assessment coordinator is Traci Hall, who comes to the district from Grapevine-Colleyville ISD, where she served in the same capacity for the past four years. She began her career 20 years ago as a math teacher in Sharyland ISD and also taught in Kopperl and Cedar Hill ISDs. In Cedar Hill ISD, she was an assistant principal at the elementary, intermediate and high school levels and then was assistant principal and interim principal at Coleman Middle School. She went on to become the district’s coordinator of PEIMS for 12 years before taking on her most recent job. Hall earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration and mathematics and her master’s degree in educational administration from Tarleton State University. A new director of community affairs and educational grants is in place for the district. She is Stella Uribe, who came to McKinney ISD in 2007 to serve as principal of Faubion Middle School. Since that time, she also has been director of federal programs and has led the district’s ESL/bilingual program. Before joining McKinney ISD, she was a language arts teacher in Freer ISD, where she went on to serve as a school counselor, federal programs director, and elementary and middle school principal. She also was an assistant principal at Burnet Elementary School in Dallas ISD. Uribe holds a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and a master’s degree in counseling and guidance from Texas A&I University (now Texas A&M University at Kingsville). Her doctorate in educational leadership was awarded from Texas A&M University at Kingsville. Meagan Wilson has been named girls’ varsity soccer head coach at Boyd High School. She comes to McKinney ISD from Wakeland High School in Frisco ISD, where she also coached girls’ soccer. She was an assistant coach in Wylie ISD and with the Dallas area D’Feeters Soccer Club and at Texas Woman’s University. Wilson played for four years with East Central University and had a spot on the Lone Star Conference All-Tournament Team in 2004. Midland ISD Several principal assignments have been made for the new academic year. They are:
• • • • •
Tanya Bell, Henderson Elementary School; Leslie Goodrum, Rusk Elementary School; Jeanette McNeely, Lee High School; Patrick Poe, Long Elementary School; and Alex Salazar, Burnet Elementary School.
Nacogdoches ISD Michael Green has retired from the position of associate superintendent of business and operations. He came to the district in 2011 after five years as assistant superintendent of Athens ISD. Longtime educator G.W. Neal ended his 41-year career with the district when he retired as assistant superintendent of elementary instruction in June. After graduating from Stephen F. Austin State University in 1972, he took his first position as a substitute teacher at Nacogdoches ISD’s Fredonia Elementary School, where he later became principal. He also served as the district’s assistant superintendent for human resources. Northside ISD Former Nichols Elementary School Vice Principal Angela Fry is now principal of Lewis Elementary. She taught first through third grades in San Antonio ISD before joining Northside ISD in 2001 to teach at Knowlton and Fisher elementary schools. She took her first Angela Fry administrative position in 2008 when she was named vice principal of Glass Elementary. Fry, who holds a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University), earned her master’s degree in educational leadership from The University of Texas at San Antonio. The new academic year will begin with Shana Hansen as principal of Glenoaks Elementary School. Most recently principal of Ott Elementary, she began her career in Northside ISD in 1987 as a third grade teacher at Passmore Elementary. She then moved to Oak Hills Terrace Shana Hansen Elementary as a third and fifth grade teacher and then to teach fourth grade at Westwood Terrace Elementary. She became an administrator in 1997 when she was appointed vice principal of Myers Elementary. She then served in the same capacity at Michael Elementary. She opened Ott Elementary as principal in 2002. Hansen earned her bachelor’s degree from The University of Texas and her master’s degree from Trinity University. The new principal of Northside AlternaSee WHO’S NEWS on page 28
July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
WHO’S NEWS continued from page 27
tive High School is Darrell Rice, formerly a hearing officer in the Pupil Personnel Department. He began his career as a classroom teacher in Killeen ISD, going on to teach and coach in Lorena, McGregor, Montgomery, Lake Worth, Darrell Rice Lampasas, Fort Worth and Coppell ISDs. His first administrative position came in Springtown ISD, where he was an assistant principal before joining Northside ISD in 2008 as assistant principal of Warren High School. Rice has a bachelor’s degree from Henderson State University in Arkansas and master’s degrees from Sam Houston State University and Sul Ross State University. His doctorate was awarded from Arizona’s Northcentral University. Madeline Rodriguez has moved from Fernandez Elementary School, where she was vice principal, to serve as principal of Ott Elementary. She has been with the district since 2001, teaching first and third grades at Raba Elementary for five years until taking her most recent Madeline position at Fernandez. A Rodriguez
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Texas School Business • July / August 2013
graduate of Our Lady of the Lake University, her master’s degree was awarded from The University of Texas at San Antonio. A number of other administrative appointments have been made for the district. They are: • Cynthia Barrett, assistant principal, O’Connor High School; • Crystal Bernard, academic dean, Pease Middle School; • Jennifer Bishop, academic dean, O’Connor High School; • Andrew Drumm, principal, Vale Middle School; • Lance Enderlin, assistant principal, Holmes High School; • Gabriela Farias, director of compensation and employment support; • Christopher Kenroy, vice principal, Villarreal Elementary School; • Vicki Kilpatrick, vice principal, McAndrew Elementary School; • Robert Knight, assistant principal, Jones Middle School; • Yvette Lopez, assistant principal, Folks Middle School; • Shawn McKenzie, vice principal, Folks Middle School; • Beatriz Mora, academic dean, Holmes High School; • Seungyun Oh, vice principal, Carnahan Elementary School; • Josue Rodriguez, assistant principal, Warren High School; • Kimberly Twedt, academic dean, Rawlinson Middle School; • Kirsten Velasquez, vice principal, Krueger Elementary School; • Sheila Yeager, vice principal, Jones Middle School; and • Kim Young, academic dean, Folks Middle School. Northwest ISD Emily Conklin has been named the district’s director of communications. She has been with the district since 2009 as a communications and multimedia specialist. Prior to that, she worked in Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD and at KXII-TV in Sherman. Conklin earned her bachEmily Conklin elor’s degree in mass communication from Texas State University. Michael Griffin has been named executive director of elementary education. She has been principal of Haslet Elementary School since 2009. Griffin holds a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Texas Tech University and a master’s degree in education from the University of Arizona. Her doctorate in educational leadership was awarded from Nova Southeastern University. Ringnolda Tremain is the new principal of Peterson Elementary School. She comes to
Texas from Kansas, where she was principal of Brewer Elementary in the Leavenworth Unified School District, as well as a coordinator of alternative programs. She also has worked as an assistant principal and eighth grade social studies teacher. Ringnolda She served on the Kansas Tremain social studies assessment committee and was a 2005-2006 Disney Teacher Award nominee. Tremain, who earned her bachelor’s degree in education from the University of St. Mary in Kansas, also holds two master’s degrees and is pursuing her doctorate in administration from Walden University. The new principal of Haslet Elementary School is Cynthia Webber, who comes to her new position from Nelson High School, where she was assistant principal. She came to Northwest ISD in 2004 and has worked at Prairie View, Roanoke and Thompson elementary schools, teachCynthia Webber ing pre-K to fourth grade. In addition, she has worked as a STAR (Strategic Techniques for Academic Results) teacher and an ELL (English language learners) instructional support teacher. Webber, who received her bachelor’s degree in sociology from Rice University, holds a master’s degree in education from Texas Christian University. Pampa ISD Kathy Phillips, a former assistant principal in Southlake Carroll ISD, will start the new school year as principal of Austin Elementary. She also has worked as a classroom teacher and elementary counselor. Jennifer Studebaker has been named principal of Travis Elementary. She was most recently assistant principal of Pampa High School. Pawnee ISD Michelle Hartmann has been named district superintendent, coming to her new job from Floresville ISD, where she was principal of that district’s alternative high school. She served as an elementary principal in Stockdale ISD from 1998 to 2003. Superintendent Elaine Richardson retired in June after a decade in that position. Pflugerville ISD Johanna Denson has taken on the role of district athletic director, coming to her new post from Waco ISD, where she held the same title for the past 10 years. She has been a district director, coordinator, campus administrator and teacher for 19 years and Johanna Denson a varsity basketball coach
for 14 years. In addition to her time with Waco ISD, she worked as athletic director in Tyler ISD. Denson earned her bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in educational administration from The University of Texas at Tyler. Pilot Point ISD The district now has Byron Terrier, former assistant superintendent of Goose Creek ISD, as its superintendent. Plano ISD Andrea Cockrell, principal of Withers Elementary School in Dallas ISD for the past four years, now leads Jackson Elementary as principal. Premont ISD Ignacio Salinas has accepted the position of superintendent of Premont ISD. He was previously superintendent of San Diego (Texas) ISD. Resigning as superintendent is Ernest Singleton. However, Singleton will remain with the district as the liaison in a newly created partnership with Texas A&M University at Kingsville. Quinlan ISD Debra Crosby, former district deputy superintendent, is now superintendent. An educator since 1976, she began as a first and fifth grade teacher in Garland ISD, going on to serve as a counselor in that district. She came to Quinlan ISD in 1994 as the high school assistant principal Debra Crosby and district testing coordinator. A year later, she was appointed deputy superintendent, a position she held until accepting her new role as the top administrator. Crosby, who earned her bachelor’s degree in education and psychology from Stephen F. Austin State University, holds a master’s degree in counseling and guidance from East Texas State University. Her doctorate in educational administration was awarded from Texas A&M University. Robstown ISD New Superintendent Maria Vidaurri comes to her new job from La Feria ISD, where she was assistant superintendent. Royse City ISD Regina Frazier, the new principal of Cherry Intermediate School, took her first teaching position in Merkel ISD. She then moved to Allen ISD, where she served as an elementary classroom teacher, SSI teacher and coordinator, summer school principal, and elementary school assistant principal. She has a bachelor’s degree from Abilene Christian University and a master’s degree in education from the University of North Texas. Julia Robinson is the new director of curriculum, coming to Royse City ISD from Commerce ISD, where she held the same position.
She began her career in Burlington, N.C., as a fifth grade teacher, arriving in Commerce ISD as an assistant principal at Commerce Elementary School. She was also a principal and director of special programs and grants. Robinson, who holds a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, earned her master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. San Antonio ISD Sylvester Perez, who had served in an interim position since March, is now the district’s superintendent. A native of San Antonio with almost 40 years’ experience as an educator, he has been superintendent of Mathis, Clint and Midland ISDs and San Marcos CISD. In addition, he has been a teacher, coach, athletics director, assistant principal and principal. He is an adjunct professor with The University of Texas Cooperative Superintendent Program and has been an adjunct professor at Texas A&M University at Kingsville and The University of Texas of the Permian Basin. Perez holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from New Mexico Highlands University and earned his doctorate from Texas A&M University. Several assignments have been made for the new academic year. They are: • Luz Barraza, director, Carroll Early Childhood Center; • Annette Castillo, principal, Fox Tech High School; • Noemi Davila, principal, Austin Academy; • Nikki Foley-Demby, principal, Miller Elementary School; • Edward Garcia, principal, Lanier High School; • Lisa Garcia, director, Knox Early Childhood Center; • Julio Garcia, principal, Rhodes Middle School; • Darlene McAlister, principal, Stewart Elementary School; • Patricia Ortiz, principal, Page Middle School; • Claudia Ramos, principal, Kelly Elementary School; • Cynthia Rocha, principal, Rodriguez Elementary School; • Brian Sparks, principal, Lamar Elementary School; • Carol Velasquez, principal, Harris Middle School; • Gregorio Velazquez Jr., director, Tynan Early Childhood Center; • Orlando Vera, principal, Jefferson High School; and • Will Webber, principal, Bonham Academy.
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IN MEMORIAM Marlin Dodds, 81, of Thorndale died May 6 at his residence. Dodds was in public education for 43 years. He was a school superintendent, retiring from Hale Center ISD. A consultant for DSA Construction Management, he was an honorary life member of the Texas Association of TSB Community Schools. July / August 2013 • Texas School Business
THE BACK PAGE by Riney Jordan
Advertiser Index Armko Industries Inc. .............................14 www.armko.com
Becoming an inspirational leader, Part 4
e’ve been talking each month about the qualities of an inspirational leader. Our list of qualities thus far includes: (1) being a good example; (2) being an encourager; (3) giving hope to others; and (4) loving your job and being passionate about its purpose. Now, we’ll add another essential quality of an inspirational leader: An inspirational leader sees potential in others and does something about it. There is a quote from Henry Miller regarding the leader who steers people in the right direction. He said, “The real leader has no need to lead; he is content to point the way.” The one person who immediately comes to mind is the school superintendent who hired me many years ago when I began my teaching career. His name: Dr. O. C. “Mike” Taylor. And I’ll tell you up front that I loved this man! Dr. Taylor recently passed away, and I was honored by his family to be asked to speak at his memorial service. What agony as I wrestled with what to say about a man who had made such an incredible difference — not only in my life — but in the lives of so many others. At his memorial service, I had an opportunity to visit with a large number of people who had worked with Dr. Taylor over the years. Time and time again, I would hear references to the fact that he was the one who told an employee that he or she needed to go into administration or earn a doctorate or even become a teacher. He had that innate ability to see potential in the people around him, and he led them in the direction they needed to go. For example, when he told me that I was going to be the next principal of the elementary school where I taught, I told him that my grades had not been that good
Texas School Business • July / August 2013
for my bachelor’s degree and that I was sure I would not be able to gain entrance into the master’s program. I explained that I had worked an average of 60 hours a week during my college years and that my grades reflected it. “I’ll see what I can do,” he said. Well, long story short, as they say, he wrote a personal letter to each of the seven members of the Admissions Board, plus the Dean of Admissions. That was a total of eight letters from the superintendent on my behalf. But he didn’t stop there. He had each member of our school board write personal letters to the Admissions Board. That was an additional 56 letters on my behalf! Then, each principal and central office administrator in the school district who had earned their master’s degrees at that university wrote a letter to each of the eight university officials. That was another 40 or so letters. I later learned that well more than 100 letters were mailed to the university, encouraging the board to admit me to the program. Suffice it to say, I would never have gotten into the program had it not been for this remarkable man who saw potential — and made it happen. So, to this dear man — Dr. O. C. “Mike” Taylor — I simply say, “Thank you for your trust in me and for making such a difference in my life. Rest in peace, my friend. You knew what your purpose was in this life, and you did an incredible job! And so many of us will never forget you for it!” 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 email@example.com or by visiting www.rineyjordan.com.
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