September/October 2022 Texas School Business

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69

YEARS

The News Magazine for Public Education in Texas

Texas School Business

SEPT/OCT

2022

A helping hand Passionate advocates for homeless students go above and beyond

Also in this issue: TASA President Gonzalo Salazar TALAS President Xavier De La Torre


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Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

12 Cover Story

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A helping hand Passionate advocates for homeless students go above and beyond

TASA President Profile Learning and collaboration guide Gonzalo Salazar’s leadership skills

by Merri Rosenberg

by Dacia Rivers

20 TALAS President Profile Ysleta ISD’s Xavier De La Torre steps up to lead TALAS by Dacia Rivers

Departments 7 Who’s News 28 Calendar 35 Ad Index

Columns

5 From the Editor by Dacia Rivers 9 The Law Dawg— Unleashed by Jim Walsh 22 The Arts by Karen Cross 35 The Back Page by Riney Jordan

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.


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From the editor

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new school year has begun, and students have returned to classrooms across Texas, ready to tackle another year. Of course, administrators, teachers and other school staff got there first, prepping their campuses and gearing up to provide the best possible education in a safe and comfortable environment. For educators who work with special populations, that goal is an especially tall, and important, order. In our feature story, writer Merri Rosenberg tells the stories of several McKinney-Vento liaisons, school staff who are assigned to work with students experiencing homelessness. Their tales are an important reminder of the invisible challenges many students bring with them to school each day, and how public education can provide these students with a wide array of opportunities and hope for a better future. I hope this new school year is an excellent one for all of Texas’ public schools, their students and their staff. As always, if there is a topic you’d like to see addressed in Texas School Business, don’t hesitate to drop me a line at drivers@texasschoolbusiness.com.

Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022 Volume LXIX, Issue 5 406 East 11th Street Austin, Texas 78701 Phone: 512-477-6361 www.texasschoolbusiness.com EDITORIAL DIRECTOR

Dacia Rivers Editorial Director

Dacia Rivers DESIGN

Phaedra Strecher COLUMNISTS

Riney Jordan Jim Walsh

ADVERTISING SALES

Jennifer Garrido

TEXAS ASSOCIATION OF SCHOOL ADMINISTRATORS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Kevin Brown

DIRECTOR, COMMUNICATIONS & MARKETING

Amy Francisco

Texas School Business (ISSN 0563-2978) is published online bimonthly with a special edition, Bragging Rights, in December, by the Texas Association of School Administrators. © Copyright 2022 Texas Association of School Administrators

Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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Natasha. “Pandemic Teacher Shortages Imperil In-Person Schooling” New York Times, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/19/us/pandemic-substitute-teacher-shortages.html. 19 January 2021 (updated 23 January 2021)

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Who’s News Abilene ISD Nyki Richardson has taken over as head girls’

gymnastics coach at both Abilene High and Cooper High. She is a graduate of Cooper and has coached for the district for 23 years, the past 19 at Abilene High.

Alamo Heights ISD (San Antonio) A new principal is in place for Alamo Heights Junior High. Stuart Guthrie was an employee of San Antonio’s North East ISD for 19 years, most recently serving as principal of Bush Middle School. He is a graduate of the University of Texas at San Antonio, where he also earned his master’s degree. His doctorate was awarded from Lamar University.

Aldine ISD The district’s new chief operations officer is Fred Washington, who was with Prairie View A&M University for 27 years, culminating in his appointment as vice president and director of athletics. He holds a bachelor’s degree and two master’s degrees, in business and community development, from that institution. In addition, the following administrative assignments are announced: • Krystal Auguste, principal, Spence Elementary School; • Andrew DeWalt, principal, Drew Academy; • Sandra Doria, executive director of math and science; • Barbara Fontenot, director of buildings and properties; • Stephen Heady, principal, Avalos P-TECH School; • Tracy Mansfield, director of learning, recovery, tutoring and student initiatives; • Dwayne Muston, director of network infrastructure; • Phoebe Pruitt, principal, Garcia Middle School; • Gerald Schattle, principal, Teague Middle School; • Walter Stewart, principal, Nimitz High School.

Arp ISD

Matt Warford has

Joel Avance now serves as head coach of the

district’s girls’ basketball program and as head cross country coach. He most recently coached in Chapel Hill ISD, where he worked in the district’s volleyball, basketball, softball and track programs. Brian Dunn, head golf coach and co-

defensive coordinator for varsity football, previously coached in Elysian Fields and Chapel Hill ISDs. The district’s new boys’ basketball coach is Brian Malone, who comes to Arp from Tatum ISD, where he was head coach at Jefferson High School.

Aubrey ISD James DuMond has been hired as Aubrey

ISD’s first boys’ soccer coach, bringing with him 15 years of high school coaching experience. He spent the past three years in Frisco ISD and prior to that was with Arlington, Duncanville and Red Oak ISDs. The district’s first girls’ soccer coach is MJ Woodward, who for the past five years was head girls’ soccer coach at South Garland High School in Garland ISD.

Austin ISD Austin ISD has named former chief officer of schools Anthony Mays interim superintendent. Prior to joining AISD, he was senior director of schools for the Harris County Department of Education and previously was an administrator in Dallas ISD. He is a graduate of Huston-Tillotson University with a master’s degree from Texas State University and a doctorate from Tarleton State University. Wayne Sneed has been

appointed Austin ISD’s police chief. He has 40 years of experience, the past 10 with the AISD police department. He also worked in law enforcement in Austin and San Marcos, served as a special agent with the National Insurance Crime Bureau, and teaches at Texas State University.

Bastrop ISD Kristi Lee has been

promoted from associate superintendent to deputy superintendent. She has 17 years of experience as an educator and administrator and has been with Bastrop ISD since 2016. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University and her master’s and doctoral degrees from Sam Houston State University.

been named associate superintendent of curriculum and instruction, coming to Bastrop from Aldine ISD, where he was assistant superintendent of teaching and learning since 2019. He is a graduate of Texas A&M University with two master’s degrees, in administration and curriculum and instruction, and a doctorate from the University of Houston.

Belton ISD Belton Middle School’s new principal is Timothy Goodridge, who spent the past five years as a Belton High School assistant principal. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and a master’s degree from Lamar University.

Brenham ISD Kelsey Lopez, new assistant principal of

Brenham Junior High, comes to Brenham from Brazoswood ISD, where she was an instructional coach. She is a graduate of Lamar University, from which she received her master’s degree in educational leadership and administration. The new principal of Alton Elementary School, Sheridan Malota, is an 11-year educator who was most recently Bellville ISD’s ESL coordinator. She holds a master’s degree from Texas State University. Pam Plagens, newly appointed assistant

principal of Brenham Middle School, has spent her 16-year career in the district, most recently working as an instructional specialist at Krause Elementary School. Her master’s degree in educational leadership is from Lamar University. Brenham Junior High’s new dean of instruction is Ali Seilheimer, formerly the school’s reading instructional coach. Her master’s degree in educational leadership was awarded from the University of Texas at Tyler. Brenham Middle School welcomed Erin Thibodeaux as principal at the start of the 2022-23 school year. She has been with the district for 18 years, most recently serving as assistant principal of Brenham Middle School. She earned her master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Texas at Tyler. Jillian Wilke now leads Krause Elementary

School as principal. She comes to her new position from the district’s Early Childhood Learning Center, where she also held the top job. An educator for 13 years, she is completing her doctorate in educational leadership from Texas A&M University.

> See Who’s News, page 10 Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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Registration fees increase September 10. Register now for the best rates! $100 discount per registrant for districts registering all board members (or trustees) and superintendent. Visit tasa.tasb.org for a list of pre-conference sessions and a field trip that require pre-registration.

Ideas. Insights. Inspiration. Shaping Public Education Together

September 23–25 San Antonio Henry B. González Convention Center

KEYNOTE SPEAKERS JON GORDON, New York Times bestselling author of “The Power of Positive Leadership” and “The Energy Bus.” MERLYNA VALENTINE, a well-respected educator for over 30 years with numerous awards as a teacher, principal, and executive director in a highly successful school district. DERRICK JOHNSON, former Texas Longhorn and Kansas City Chief. Founder and president of Defend the Dream Foundation which provides low-income and inner-city youth the opportunities and resources to reach their full potential in school and life.


THE LAW DAWG – UNLEASHED

School dress code violates the Constitution, so sayeth the 4th Circuit

Vist TSB online!

by Jim Walsh

I

had the opportunity recently to sit in on a meeting of school administrators as they reviewed changes to the student dress code. The changes were designed to make the dress code gender neutral. Can the girls have long hair? So can the boys. Can the girls wear earrings? So can the boys. Other than gender neutrality the district wanted to stick with some pretty old school ideas about dress and grooming. There was much discussion about what kind of weird hairstyles and colors would be permitted. The topic of cleavage came up. I’ve never seen a dress code that uses that word, although there are often references to “low cut” garments. They decided not to say anything specifically about cleavage, which I think is wise. Lots of districts are going to go through a similar drill as pressure builds to make dress codes gender neutral. A recent decision from the 4th Circuit will add to that pressure. The case involved a K-8 charter school in North Carolina that requires girls to wear skirts. No, really — they do. Yes, the boys at the school must conform to a uniform policy as well, and it’s equally conservative. But the girls claim that this skirt requirement in particular imposes a burden on them that the boys do not have to deal with. They are more inhibited on the playground; they have to take care as to how they sit. It can be cold on bare legs in North Carolina. The founder of the school, who still serves on the board, claimed that the dress code promoted chivalry. He testified that “chivalry” meant “a code of conduct where women … are regarded as a fragile vessel that men are supposed to take care of and honor.”

I intend to poll the Women of Walsh Gallegos and see how they feel about that. Fragile vessels, indeed. Fiddle-dee-dee, Miss Scarlet! But that gives you an idea of the culture the charter school was promoting. One of the board members testified that school at the Charter Day School was more like school was 50 years ago. This appealed to many parents, but three of them, representing girls in kindergarten, 4th and 8th grades, sued the school, alleging that the dress code, besides being a few centuries behind the times, was illegal. The 4th Circuit, sitting en banc, has now held that this particular provision in the dress code violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution. Pursuant to prior cases, the court noted that any distinction based on sex must be justified by an “exceedingly persuasive case” to the effect that the distinction serves an “important governmental objective.” The majority opinion concluded that Charter Day School’s explanation for its skirt requirement fell “woefully short” since the rationale for the requirement was to reinforce outdated gender stereotypes. That’s not an “important governmental objective.” The court also held that Title IX applies to school dress codes, and remanded the case to the lower court for a ruling as to whether the dress code also violates that statute. But the big news here is the Constitutional ruling as it will be cited in every future challenge to a distinction in a school dress code based on sex. So get ready. It’s Peltier v. Charter Day School, Inc., decided by the entire 4th Circuit on June 14, 2022. It’s cited at 37 F.4th 104.

Check us out online at texasschoolbusiness.com for: ► recent issues ► how to submit articles ► Bragging Rights nomination info ► advertising information ► and more! Texas School Business THE NEWS MAGAZINE FOR PUBLIC EDUCATION IN TEXAS

69 Years and Counting

JIM WALSH is an attorney with Walsh Gallegos Treviño Russo & Kyle PC. He can be reached at jwalsh@wabsa.com. You can also follow him on Twitter: @jwalshtxlawdawg. Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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Who’s News > Continued from page 7

Brownsville ISD Now serving as head volleyball coach for Veterans Memorial Early College High School is Sherry Hoskins. She previously coached in the Harlingen, Northside (San Antonio), Calallen and Medina Valley school districts. Veterans Memorial Early College High School has selected Raul Vasquez as its next girls’ soccer head coach.

Veteran educator Alma Velez has been named principal of Jones Elementary School after serving as Long Intermediate School’s dean of instruction. She holds a doctorate in educational psychology from Texas A&M University. Former Midland ISD executive director of special services Jennifer Warren is now Bryan ISD’s executive director of special programs. She previously was an administrator in Corsicana ISD and taught in Palestine ISD. She is a graduate of Texas A&M University and a doctoral candidate at Lamar University.

Caddo Mills ISD Caddo Mills ISD is in the process of creating its first police department and has hired Ramon Rodriguez as director of security. He was Greenville ISD’s chief of police for six years.

Bryan ISD Now serving as director of communications and public affairs is Clay Falls, who was a reporter for KBTX-TV. He holds a degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Texas.

Canutillo ISD (El Paso)

Bryan High School graduate Justin Garcia has returned to his alma mater as head baseball coach after spending the past five years as a varsity baseball assistant at A&M Consolidated High.

Canutillo Elementary School’s new principal is Esteban Alvarez, who comes to CISD from El Paso’s Socorro ISD, where he was assistant principal of Hilley Elementary. He earned his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in educational administration from the University of Texas at El Paso.

Bryan ISD’s board of trustees announces the appointment of Linda Montoya as executive director of school leadership. She was principal of Jones Elementary School for the past 11 years and prior to that was the district’s special education director. Bryan native Alfred Scott will open the district’s new Sadberry Intermediate School for the 2023-24 school year. He is currently an assistant principal at Bryan High School. Linda Taplette has been

promoted to principal of Fannin Elementary School after serving as the school’s assistant principal for the past eight years. She is a graduate of Delta State University with a master’s degree from Criswell College and a second master’s degree, in school leadership, from Sam Houston State University.

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Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

Now filling the position of executive director of curriculum and instruction is Jesica Arellano, former principal of Northwest Early College High School and Garcia Elementary. She is nearing completion of her doctorate in education from Texas A&M University. The new executive director of finance is Cristina Pulley. She was the district’s director of finance and formerly worked as an accountant and financial analyst in El Paso ISD. She earned her business administration degree from the University of Texas at El Paso.

education from the University of Texas at Tyler.

Channing ISD Channing ISD announces the appointment of Misty Heiskell as superintendent. An educator for 23 years, she comes to Channing from Dalhart ISD, where she was principal of Dalhart Intermediate School. Previously a teacher and administrator in Canyon and Amarillo ISDs, she earned her bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from West Texas A&M University.

Clear Creek ISD The following administrative appointments are announced: • Angela Hinkelman, director of professional learning; • Jeff Kohlenberg, controller.

Conroe ISD Shalanda Burks has been

named principal of the Oak Ridge High School Ninth Grade Campus. She began her career in 2012 as a teacher and head cheer coach in Conroe ISD. Previous positions with the district have included RtI interventionist, instructional coach, and assistant principal.

Coppell ISD Melissa Arnold, newly

appointed principal of Coppell Middle School East, began her career with the district in 2005 as a teacher at Coppell High School, where she was named assistant principal in 2013. She previously served as the school’s associate principal since 2017. She is a graduate of New Mexico State University with a master’s degree in educational leadership from Western Governors University.

The district’s newly hired head volleyball coach, Jason Tanaka, brings 25 years of experience to his new job. He was Southern Methodist University’s assistant volleyball coach since 2015 and prior to that coached for a decade at Texas Christian University.

Now leading Denton Creek Elementary School is Chris Gollner, former assistant principal of Coppell High School. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Texas State University and a master’s degree in educational leadership and administration from the University of Texas at Arlington.

Carthage ISD

Corpus Christi ISD

The new principal of Carthage Primary School is Jennifer Register, who was the school’s assistant principal since 2009. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University and her master’s degree in

Middle School, previously led the district’s Metro Elementary School of Design. An employee of CCISD since 2002, he is completing his doctorate in educational

Carroll ISD

David Crabtree, new principal of Driscoll


leadership from Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi. Now serving as principal of Grant Middle School is Raymond Garza, who was administrator for academics and accountability at Veterans Memorial High School. Now working on his doctorate at A&M University at Corpus Christi, he previously worked in Flour Bluff ISD. Shea Hernandez is now principal of Kolda

Elementary School. The 22-year educator, who previously worked in West Oso and Flour Bluff ISDs, earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Texas at San Antonio. The new director of special programs is Zonia Lopez, former principal of Kolda Elementary School. An educator since 1991, she earned her bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University at Kingsville and her master’s degree from Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi. Justin Milner has been named principal of

the Metro Elementary School of Design, coming to his new job from Adkins Middle School, where he was an assistant principal. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi.

Corsicana ISD Corsicana ISD’s board of trustees has named Debbie Cottar assistant superintendent of special programs. She has been with the district for 45 years, the past 10 as an administrator and most recently serving as director of student support. Clint Roddy, executive

director of athletics and extracurricular programs, is a graduate of Navarro College, where he served as a coach. He went on to serve as head coach and athletic director in Dallas and Irving ISDs.

Crowell ISD Marshall Moore, former secondary principal

in Sulphur Bluff ISD, now leads Crowell ISD as superintendent.

Dalhart ISD Former Vernon ISD superintendent Jeff Byrd now holds the top position in Dalhart ISD. Prior to his last five years in Vernon, he led Claude and Gorman ISDs.

Dallas ISD Dallas ISD has announced the hiring of Stephanie Elizalde as superintendent. She comes to Dallas from leading Austin ISD.

Denton ISD New McNair Elementary School principal Djenane Bolton served as the school’s interim principal since January. She has been an educator for 12 years and holds a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in early childhood education, both from Texas Woman’s University. Former Rayzor Elementary School assistant principal Sarah Critton now serves as campus principal. She came to the district in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Texas and a master’s degree from the University of Texas at Arlington. Jairia Diggs, newly appointed

director of federal programs and school improvement, was most recently principal of Providence Elementary School. She previously worked in Northwest and Keller ISDs. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Arlington and her master’s degree from Texas Woman’s University.

Now serving as principal of Savannah Elementary School is Andrea Hawkins. After beginning her career in Oklahoma, she taught in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and joined Denton ISD in 2003. Since 2019 she served as assistant principal of Paloma Creek Elementary. Emily Manning, a 20-year

employee of the district, now leads Stephens Elementary School as principal. She has a bachelor’s degree from Wayland Baptist University and two master’s degrees, in reading education from the University of North Texas and in educational leadership from Stephen F. Austin State University. Guyer High School’s new band director, Rob Myers, is a 20-year veteran of public school music programs. He previously led the fine arts departments in Red Oak, Arlington and Dallas ISDs and was director of bands at Flower Mound High in Flower Mound ISD. In addition, he

was an adjunct professor at the University of Texas at Arlington. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan and his master’s degree from Lamar University. The Windle School for Young Children will welcome Chris Rangel this fall as its principal. She has 22 years of experience as a teacher and administrator, all but two of those with Denton ISD, the past 11 as principal of Stephens Elementary. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Texas Woman’s University and her doctorate from Capella University. Landon Turrubiarte has

accepted a promotion from assistant principal to principal of Blanton Elementary School. The Dallas Baptist University graduate joined Denton in ISD in 2009 and holds a master’s degree in educational leadership from Texas Woman’s University.

DeSoto ISD DeSoto High School welcomed Jasen Campbell as its new principal for the 2022-23 academic year. An educator in Dallas ISD for 22 years, he most recently led Wilmer-Hutchins High School. He is a graduate of Huston-Tillotson University and received his master’s degree in education administration from Prairie View A&M University. Lawrence Galloway, new chief financial

officer, began his education career in Louisiana and was most recently chief operating officer of Marlin ISD. He holds two master’s degrees, from Texas A&M University at Commerce and from the University of Maryland. Dina Jammer, newly appointed principal of

The Meadows Elementary School, is an 18year educator with a bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston and a master’s degree from Lamar University. She is a former employee of Lancaster ISD. Jaime Kovar has accepted the position of

chief of college, career and military readiness after completing three years as director of advanced academics, fine arts and JROTC. She previously was an administrator in Burleson ISD. Now serving as director of school improvement is Stephanie McCloud. She is a 14-year educator with a master’s degree in education administration. DeSoto West Middle School has welcomed Metric Manning as its new principal. With extensive experience in the notfor-profit sector as well as education, he holds three master’s degrees, two from > See Who’s News, page 16 Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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A helping hand

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Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

Passionate advocates for homeless students go above and beyond Merri Rosenberg


P

art cheerleader, part den mother, some-time fairy godmother and always a fierce advocate — those educators who serve students experiencing homelessness in Texas public schools go way beyond their job descriptions. They are committed to ensuring that no matter how or where a student is living, school offers a safe and stable place for them to be. Under federal law, all districts are required to provide appropriate services for students experiencing homelessness. The 1987 McKinney-Vento Act requires that any students who lack “a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence” are classified as homeless. They are eligible to receive a free, appropriate public education; enroll in school even if they don’t have documents; attend their home school, or the local school; receive transportation, and receive educational services that may be needed. The U.S Department of Education provides funding to states, based on the individual states’ proportion of the Title 1, Part A federal allocation. The program requires states to distribute no less than 75% of those funds to local school districts. The COVID-19 pandemic led Congress to authorize $800 million in additional grants to serve students who are homeless, enabling districts to expand their services. Before the pandemic, there were about 1.4 million students who were homeless, or nearly 3% of all students.

McKinney-Vento liaisons will do whatever it takes to get these students to school and keep them there. Their offices often double as storage centers for clothing and school supplies. Many seek gift cards from local community members and organizations to distribute during the holidays. Many visit students in shelters or provide transportation, including public transportation vouchers, so students can make it to school. When a student’s family needed temporary shelter, Galveston ISD’s Mary Patrick paid for them to spend a week at a hotel in the summer of 2021.

During the pandemic, Ashley Marshall, the homeless education program manager for Dallas ISD, made sure food was delivered to these students and families by a district school Estella Garza bus. She saw that one student, an unaccompanied minor, got the glasses he needed. San Antonio ISD’s Estella Garza and her team have even bought caps and gowns for graduating seniors.

Mary Patrick

If a student has trouble getting to school, Desiree Le in Round Rock ISD borrows a district vehicle and provides transportation. When someone donates fresh produce from a local farm, Le reaches out to the food services department to see how they can transform those resources for students and their families. When she’s invited to speak to local groups, Le unapologetically asks for gift cards she can pass along to students and families in need.

“Every day presents a challenge, but God has given me the tools to serve and find resources that will assist them. My goal is to do whatever it takes to be successful.”

“I’ll level every asset we have … I start by asking, ‘What do you need first?’,” says Le, whose district of about 48,000 students serves 1,015 students who are homeless. “The more you can do case by case, and the more

“I love working with our students and their families,” says Patrick, executive director of special programs and ECH/homeless and foster care liaison in the 6,700-student district, which served about 294 homeless students this year.

That’s a common refrain for these missiondriven professionals.

> See Advocates, page 14

There are many reasons students are homeless. Some are unaccompanied minors who’ve migrated from another country. Some are victims of trafficking. Others may be living with their mother and siblings in a shelter, if they were in a domestic abuse situation. Sometimes high school students are couch surfing if their parents have moved on without them. Or families may temporarily need these services if they lose their home from a fire, hurricane, or other disaster. “I wear many hats,” says Norma Mercado, the McKinney-Vento liaison at Bastrop ISD. Mercado often sees students drop by her office whether they need something as basic as a pair of shoes or are in crisis because they don’t know where they’ll be sleeping that night.

◄ Galveston ISD's Mary Patrick and her team prepare a holiday celebration for students in need.

▲ New Braunfels ISD is home to Maria's Closet, where families in need can get free coats for the winter. Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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> Continued from page 13

humanity you put into the connection, it comes down to how do you care for students and help them get what they need.” External outreach is critical to boost these efforts. Patrick reaches out to the community to provide clothing and school supplies. One Galvestonian donates six bicycles every year. At the holiday season, the school campuses refer the neediest students, who supply a list of three needs and three wants, which are then fulfilled by members of the community. Others make financial contributions. In the Dallas community, many organizations and individuals provide goods and services. The King Foundation, for example, provided funds for a dropin center targeting homeless youth, says Marshall. At Christmas, she solicits donations to fulfill middle and high school students’ Amazon wish lists. In the 11,346-student Bastrop ISD, Mercado oversees the district’s McKinney-Vento program, which serves 800 students. As someone who experienced homelessness when she was younger, Mercado says, “I was always judged. No one tried to help … I never want a family to be turned away.” She and her team — there is a McKinney-Vento contact in each of the district’s 15 schools — partner and work with local government and community agencies to make sure students are protected and able to access school. A close partner is a local mental health facility.

▲ Staff in Galveston ISD load donated gifts for a holiday party for students in need.

4116 Ave N ½ Galveston TX 77550 Sunday Dec. 13th 2-4 pm

She pays particular attention to unaccompanied homeless students, who she says, “have to navigate all the systems.”

Must register by phone Boxes will include:

These liaisons also do a lot of outreach within the districts themselves.

Maria Alcala

In New Braunfels ISD, a district of 9,500 students that has about 360 students who are homeless, Maria Alcala, the McKinney-Vento liaison, wants these students on educators’ radars.

“I meet constantly with principals and counselors,” says Alcala. “You have to know your people, and the students and counselors and administrators have to know you’re an asset.”

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Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

Sponsored by: Galveston Independent School District

Green Beans

Corn

Cranberry Sauce

Pumpkin

Yams

Stuffing Mix

Masa

Baking Mix

Corn Muffin Mix

Mixed Fruit

Gravy Mix

Fresh Produce

Need to request a holiday food box? Call the Share Your Holidays Phone Bank to request a holiday food box. Volunteers will match you with the nearest Food Bank partner for box pick up and designated times. Please note: the phone bank will experience high call volumes during this time and is suggested to keep calling to get your request in. Phone Bank Numbers English: 713-547-8692 Spanish: 713-547-8693 Phone Bank Hours Monday, November 30 – Thursday, December 3 7:45 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. Friday, December 4 5:45 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

► Galveston ISD invites families in need to request free holiday food boxes.

Saturday, December 5 7:45 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. This institution is an equal opportunity provider. Esta institución es un proveedor de igualdad de oportunidades.

ALL DISTRIBUTIONS WILL BE DRIVE THRU ONLY UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE Toda las distribuciones de comida serán distribuidos a sus vehiculos, hasta neuvo aviso.


One of Mercado’s goals is to offer more training to teachers about the challenges students experiencing homelessness may face. A lot of teachers are not aware,” she says. In 154,000-student Dallas ISD, Marshall, whose department serves about 4,000 homeless students, offers training for the district’s new teachers to make them aware of her office and the services she and her team can provide. She also puts up posters in all the buildings with QR codes that link to the office website. “The challenge is letting folks know we can help,” says Marshall. Most of the students are in the elementary schools, as “older homeless students know how to hide from us.” Marshall and her team also introduce themselves to cafeteria and library staff, to “let them know who we are, to make all these connections,” so they might encourage students to connect with the McKinneyVento staff. “We just want to help,” says Marshall. “[We want them to know] it’s OK to ask for help. There’s no shame around that.” In 45,780-student San Antonio ISD, Estella Garza, director of family and student support services, says many “do not realize how severe homelessness is.” With six social workers on her team, as well as a data analyst, they pay careful attention to the numbers of homeless students and their circumstances. “It’s about connecting the dots,” says Garza, who has done this work for 30 years. “I’m focused on services to kids.” She adds, “We want to be proactive in reaching out to the campus.” Some of her efforts involve training high school counselors to make them aware of the McKinney-Vento regulations, and how these counselors can “help a child figure out where he’s living” for college applications. These liaisons are intent on ensuring students who are homeless have the opportunity to pursue their dreams and ambitions. Le says her underlying goal is “How do I get you to the next grade, with more skills than when you started with me? What sets you on fire, to be college and career ready, to be as excited to go into work as I am? My passion is transitioning high school kids to college.”

Patrick is relentless in persuading students to aspire to post-secondary education and not join the work force immediately to be able to pay for housing. She is determined to keep them in school and ultimately graduating. “One hundred percent of our homeless students are graduating from high school,” says Patrick. She tracks attendance daily, calling parents and doing whatever is needed to find these students. Galveston ISD has an automatic system for attendance. “We get alerted immediately the day of the absence, and our case manager follows up if there’s a pattern,” Patrick says. As a first-generation college student herself, Patrick understands the challenges her students confront. She’ll mentor them, and even work with them on FAFSA applications. She speaks to each high school class at the beginning of the school year, and keeps a locked mailbox at the high school, offering students a chance to share their status.

“There are many reasons students are homeless. McKinney-Vento liaisons will do whatever it takes to get these students to school and keep them there. ”

“It’s confidential and the kids know that,” she says. “They will self-report. In one situation, we helped the students’ parents, who didn’t want the help. The more people know, maybe they will get more and more assistance. We try whatever the family needs.” Like other McKinney-Vento liaisons, Alcala in New Braunfels asks her students about their future plans and ambitions. Whether it’s a trade school, community college or university, Alcala wants them to “see they have a shot.” She takes pride in sharing the statistic that upwards of 94-100% of her seniors graduate. And with the second ARP grant, she plans to take students to visit colleges this fall. Marshall makes sure her juniors and seniors have a post high school plan. One of her success stories is a student whose family is “chronically homeless.” That student lived in a hotel yet graduated with a scholarship to play football at an Arizona college. As Mercado says, “There’s hope. Education is the equalizer. That’s my mission.” MERRI ROSENBERG is a freelance writer specializing in education issues, based in a northern suburb of New York City.

Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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Who’s News > Continued from page 11

Dallas Theological Seminary and one in educational leadership from Texas Tech University. Silvia Martinez is the new executive director

of administrative services. With more than 20 years of experience as an educator, she previously worked in the Duncanville, West Orange-Cove, Dallas, Mesquite and Cuero school districts. Cockrell Hill Elementary School has welcomed Cathye Smith as principal. She comes to DeSoto from Arlington ISD and previously worked in Dallas ISD. She is a graduate of the University of Texas at Tyler with a master’s degree from Concordia University.

Duncanville ISD New Smith Elementary School principal Latonia Dennis has spent her career in Duncanville ISD, most recently serving as assistant principal of Fairmeadows Elementary. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and a master’s degree from Lamar University. Pablo Orozco is the new principal of

Fairmeadows Elementary School. An educator for 10 years, he previously taught in Fort Worth ISD and was most recently an assistant principal at Duncanville High School. After receiving a bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Dallas, he earned his master’s degree from the University of North Texas. Kennemer Middle School’s new principal, Tamra Thompson, has spent 18 of her 27year career in Duncanville ISD. Prior to that, she was with Wilmer-Hutchins ISD. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of North Texas and her master’s degree from Texas A&M University at Commerce.

El Paso ISD Amanda Bowser has been named principal

of Franklin High School after serving as its assistant principal. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Clarion University. Bowie High School’s new principal, Rosaura Gandarilla, comes to her new job from El Paso’s Ysleta ISD. The 16-year educator earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Texas at El Paso. Jacqueline Kennedy has accepted the

position of chief academic officer. She comes to El Paso from Arlington ISD, where she served in several leadership positions. She

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Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

is a graduate of Grambling State University with a master’s degree from Dallas Baptist University and a doctorate from the University of North Texas. Joseph Manago has been promoted from

principal of Andress High School to executive principal. He began his career in El Paso’s Ysleta and Socorro ISDs. He received his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Texas at El Paso. Mark Paz is El Paso ISD’s new assistant

superintendent of schools after leading El Paso High School since 2018. He previously was a campus administrator in El Paso’s Canutillo ISD. Former El Paso High School assistant principal Sandra Rocha is now campus principal. She holds bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Texas at El Paso. Emily Stuessy, director of guidance and

counseling, was most recently the district’s lead counselor for middle schools. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Sul Ross State University, where she also received her master’s degree in guidance and counseling.

Eanes ISD Forest Trail Elementary School’s new principal, Holly Reid, was assistant principal of Cedar Creek Elementary since 2019. Prior to joining Eanes ISD, she worked in Elgin, Ennis, Waxahachie, Madisonville and DeSoto ISDs. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and her master’s degree from Tarleton State University.

East Central ISD (San Antonio) Three principals have been selected for the district. They are: • Krystle Halbardier, Pecan Valley Elementary School; • Melissa Kocian, East Central High School; • Ashland Pingue, CAST Lead High School.

Electra ISD After a 30 year career in Texas public schools, superintendent Ted West is retiring. He has led Electra ISD since 2003.

ESC Region 4 Rodney Watson has been

named executive director of Education Service Center Region 4. He joins Region 4 from the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB), where he was deputy executive director and chief of staff. Prior to

that assignment, he was superintendent of Spring ISD and held several administrative positions in Houston ISD. He is a graduate of Northwest Missouri State University with a master’s degree in counseling psychology from Weber University. His doctorate was conferred by the University of Missouri at Kansas City.

Fabens ISD The district’s athletic director, Rolaura De Anda, brings 20 years of experience as a coach and educator to her new position. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at El Paso and her master’s degree from Sul Ross State University.

Forestburg ISD The new principal of Forestburg School is Trey Cumby. He has been with the district since 2018, previously working in the private sector as a curriculum developer, instructional designer and instructor. He is a graduate of Fort Hays State University.

Fort Bend ISD Now serving as principal of Glover Elementary School is Clementine Arana, former assistant principal of Ridgemont Elementary. The 25-year educator holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston and a master’s degree from Texas Southern University. Dulles Elementary School’s new principal, Raymond Haas, has been promoted from serving as assistant principal of Heritage Rose Elementary. He previously worked in Del Valle ISD. His bachelor’s degree is from the University of Texas and his master’s degree was earned from Concordia University. The district has named Michael Jones executive director of transportation. He comes to his new job from Lamar CISD, where he was transportation director since 2015. With 40 years of experience in the field, he previously worked in Friendswood, Lufkin, Center, Seguin and Nacogdoches ISDs. He is a graduate of Stephen F. Austin State University.

Fort Sam Houston ISD (San Antonio) The new principal of Cole Middle/High School is Joseph Cerna, who most recently was the district’s elementary principal. René Gómez is the new principal of Fort

Sam Houston Elementary School. He spent the past six years in San Antonio’s Alamo Heights ISD as a campus administrator and


previously taught ESL in Oklahoma and in Houston ISD.

Georgetown ISD

Fort Worth ISD

has spent her 20-year career with the district as a teacher, coordinator and, most recently, director of digital learning.

Fort Worth ISD has announced the placement of four principals. They are: • Diana Garcia-Allen, Young Men’s Leadership Academy; • Stephanie Hughes, Clayton Elementary School; • Jose Lara, Trimble Technical High School; • David Paraham, Woodway Elementary School. In addition, six assistant principal assignments are announced. They are: • Dexter Dotson, Benbrook Middle School and Benbrook High School; • Sandra Saenz-Huerta, James Middle School; • Beverly Liberato, Stevens Elementary School; • Melissa Strom, Arlington Heights High School; • Jessica Tackett, Marine Creek Collegiate High School; • Erica Ward, Monnig Middle School.

Fredericksburg ISD Scott Duncan has been named principal of

Fredericksburg Elementary School. He has 22 years of experience as an educator, 13 of those as an administrator, and was most recently an elementary principal in Humble ISD. Dalen Kirchner, former principal of Gillespie

County High School and that district’s safety coordinator, is now principal of Fredericksburg Middle School.

Lori Maxcey is now assistant superintendent

of teaching and learning. She comes to her new position from serving as Brownwood ISD’s director of curriculum and instruction.

Frisco ISD Frisco ISD’s newest campus, Panther Creek High School, will open in August with Ryan Solano at the helm as principal. He joined the district in 2016 as an assistant principal at Independence High.

Galena Park ISD Galena Park ISD has announced the appointment of Lemond Mitchell as principal of Williamson Elementary School. An educator for 19 years, he has spent seven years in the district working as an assistant and associate principal.

Kim Garcia, executive director of technology,

The new principal of Tippit Middle School is Jennifer Guidry. The 17-year educator previously led McCoy Elementary since 2019. She received her bachelor’s degree from Wayland Baptist University and her master’s degree in educational administration from Concordia University. Now serving as executive director of human resources is Sue Harrison, who previously was the district’s director of human resources. She has worked in that field for 15 years. Alfonso Longoria is now principal of East

View High School. He comes to his new position from leading Tippit Middle School and has 20 years of experience in education, with more than 10 of those as a campus administrator.

Goliad ISD Holly Lyon, who served as the

district’s superintendent on an interim basis since March, is now superintendent. She previously served as principal of Goliad Middle School after working in Detroit (Tx.), North Zulch, Longview and Campbell ISDs. She received her bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University at Commerce and her master’s degree in educational leadership from Western Governors University.

Gonzales ISD The district’s new superintendent is Elmer Avellaneda. He has spent 10 years with the district, serving as a campus administrator, executive director of special programs, assistant superintendent and, most recently, associate superintendent. He received his bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and his master’s and doctoral degrees from Tarleton State University. Now serving as director of secondary education is Wanda Fryer, who has been with the district for 20 years, working as an assistant principal and principal and, most recently, director of student and community services. North Avenue Intermediate School will welcome Vanessa Gibson as its new principal this fall. She has been an educator for 17 years, the past seven as an administrator. She comes to Gonzales from Lockhart ISD, where she was assistant principal of Navarro Elementary School.

Karen Perez has accepted the position of

principal of Gonzales Junior High School. She has 21 years of experience as a teacher, assistant principal and principal.

Granbury ISD New associate director of bands Jocelyn Cummons previously worked in Hemphill and Cleveland ISDs. She has an associate degree from Blinn College and a bachelor’s degree in music education from Northwestern Louisiana State University. The district’s new director of student services is Leah Dawson, who most recently was assistant principal of Acton Elementary. An employee of the district since 2008, she received her bachelor’s degree from Abilene Christian University and a master’s degree from Texas Woman’s University. Mario Morales has accepted

the position of director of bands after serving music programs in Kaufman, Castleberry and Alief ISDs. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Arlington and a master’s degree in music education from William Carey University. Maggie Walton now leads

Acton Elementary School as principal. She has spent the past 10 years at the school as a teacher, instructional specialist and assistant principal. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and a master’s degree from Texas Christian University. Karla Willmeth has been

promoted from principal of Acton Elementary School to assistant director of curriculum. She began her career in Abilene ISD after earning her bachelor’s degree from Abilene Christian University. She also holds a master’s degree from Lamar University. In addition, four assistant principals have been appointed for the district. They are: • Nathan Daniels, Oak Woods School; • Jessica Johnson, STEAM Academy at Mambrino; • Mallory Myers, Acton Elementary School; • Angie Payne, Acton Elementary School.

> See Who’s News, page 24 Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

17


PRESIDENT PROFILE

Texas Association of School Administrators

Learning and collaboration guide Gonzalo Salazar’s leadership skills by Dacia Rivers

G

onzalo Salazar’s first love was architecture. As a young child, he immigrated to the Rio Grande Valley from Mexico with his family, but as he entered college, he realized there weren’t many jobs in the area for architects. Without the means to relocate, Salazar thought back on his own educational experiences and decided he’d give teaching a try. Once an immigrant student himself, he thought he could help out other young people in similar situations. “I’m glad that nothing else worked out,” says Salazar, now superintendent in Los Fresnos CISD. “My real passion is education.” During his time as an undergraduate, Salazar worked at the food service warehouse in Brownsville ISD, delivering food to cafeterias. He went on to be the inventory clerk in the district, and after graduation taught fourth grade in San Benito CISD as a bilingual teacher. After four years spending his days in the classroom and his nights earning a master’s degree, Salazar was hired as an assistant principal, and then an elementary principal before being named interim superintendent in Los Fresnos. Much like teaching, the superintendency wasn’t originally in Salazar’s short-term plans. The only reason he had his superintendent’s certificate at the time was because a cohort from Los Fresnos needed a 10th student to meet the minimum

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Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

requirement for University of Texas Rio Grande Valley to hold classes in their boardroom. Salazar agreed to be that 10th person, thinking he’d use the certificate later in his career, when his children were older. But in 2005, Los Fresnos CISD needed an interim superintendent, and the board asked him to take the post while they looked for someone to lead the district. During a bond meeting, Salazar gave presentations in Spanish and in English, and one board member was impressed by how the community responded. The board offered the permanent superintendency to Salazar and he accepted. Seventeen years later, he still holds the role. “I knew how to be a great elementary principal, and I was enjoying the heck out of that. But God had a different plan.” While Salazar says he had a lot to learn when he became superintendent, he’s taken to the position completely and says he loves what he does. In his more than 20 years in Texas public education, he’s seen many changes, but at this moment he believes one of the biggest challenges school districts face is a lack of dialogue. Whether the topic is improving curriculum or removing library books, Salazar says everyone involved in the school community should engage in intentional dialogue, rather


than jumping into conflict and heated discussions.

improvements by developing his skills as a leader.

“We serve the public. We’re producing the public, and I think it’s important that, even when we have different views, we all come together for the good of those we serve, to model for children how through dialogue, we can find some common ground.”

“I’ve never lost sight of how we can use the authority of the position to make the job easier for principals, who in turn can use the authority of their position to make the job easier for their teachers, who create the meaningful experiences that change the trajectory of students’ lives.”

In a desire to always strive for a higher level of proficiency in his career, Salazar joined TASA and began participating in several opportunities, including joining the Future-Ready Superintendents Leadership Network and serving on the Legislative Committee. “Every time I’ve sacrificed time away from the district to participate in TASA conferences or professional development, I’ve come back with these nuggets, these ideas or things we can implement to make us better,” Salazar says. “Every interaction with our colleagues has allowed me to grow. TASA as an organization creates a platform for us to reach a higher level of proficiency in public education.” Through his servant leadership, Salazar hopes to ease the path for teachers in his district. He says he’s always looking to help improve every campus in Los Fresnos, and feels he can best facilitate these

By participating in TASA events and building relationships with other school administrators, Salazar says he’s better equipped as a leader to serve the students in his own district. “The grind is tough, and there is solitude in leadership that every member of TASA understands, and that’s the beauty of it. I can always reach out to colleagues, whether I need a sounding board, or just to find out who’s doing it better than we are, so we can continue to help those we serve.” In his time as TASA president, Salazar says he hopes to amplify the amazing things happening in Texas’ public schools.

Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA) Membership: TASA membership includes public school leaders at the district and campus levels. Mission: TASA’s mission is to promote, provide and develop leaders who create and sustain studentcentered schools and develop futureready students. Year founded: 1925 Website: tasanet.org

“State assessments don’t define us. All the great things happening in our public schools can’t be measured by a single exam.” DACIA RIVERS is editorial director of Texas School Business.

65

+

years of

educational

facility design

ARCHITECTURE ▪ INTERIOR DESIGN

Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

19


PRESIDENT PROFILE

Texas Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents

Ysleta ISD’s Xavier De La Torre steps up to lead TALAS by Dacia Rivers

G

rowing up, education was of paramount importance in Xavier De La Torre’s family. His parents had migrated to California from Mexico so that their four children could receive the best education possible. “My father made it clear that he had migrated 2,000 miles from his hometown to ensure his children had access to what was the best public school system in the world at that time,” says De La Torre, who serves as superintendent in El Paso’s Ysleta ISD. “While he worked day and night in lumber mills, our job was to do well in school.” De La Torre played baseball and football while studying at California State University, Chico, and one year his coach required that players give back to the community by working at a local school’s intramural program. It was De La Torre’s first time working as a teacher, and he fell in love with it. “It felt natural,” he says. “It felt like this was the gift that I’d been given.” Following that experience, De La Torre directed his studies to receive a double major in Spanish and social studies, and received his teaching credentials. He worked as a classroom teacher for 10 years in California, also serving as a football and baseball coach. After earning his master’s degree, De La Torre worked as an assistant principal and principal and went on to receive a doctoral degree from the University of California, Davis, earning the Edgar Morphet Award for his dissertation on human resources and personnel. In California, he spent several years in administrative positions before being recruited to come to Texas and serve as superintendent of

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Socorro ISD, also in El Paso. After three years in Socorro, De La Torre was asked to return to California to serve as county superintendent of schools in Santa Clara County. He says it was a learning experience for him, but after he realized the county superintendent role was distant and far-removed from students, he knew he needed to get back into the superintendent’s office. That decision brought him back to El Paso, where he took the Ysleta office he’s now held for eight and a half years. “Education is the universal game changer, and I want to give back to all the children and families that I can help, even in a small way.” De La Torre has seen significant changes and challenges in his years working in education, but says that right now might be the most difficult period the public school system has experienced. He points to the COVID-19 pandemic, a lack of funding and competition from charter schools and some of the obstacles school districts face. “Being an educator has become significantly less appealing, leading to a nationwide shortage of highly qualified educators,” he says. “The social and emotional toll that many students carry is unimaginable to many. More and more, the expectations and responsibilities are falling on our public school systems, and it’s taking a toll on our teachers.” In response to these challenges, De La Torre says his belief is that public school systems will prove their worth, competing with charter school performance and coming out on top, though he adds that the lack of funding and assessment parity between public and charter schools must be addressed.


“You can no longer sit back and say the only thing available to people is the traditional public school system that has been in place for close to 200 years,” he says. “That has led to a sense of urgency that I think has resulted in significant improvement across the system.” De La Torre believes that what public schools do best is what makes them crucial: They teach all students, no matter who they are or where they come from. “The only thing we can control are not the students we wish we had, but the students we actually have. Let’s focus on them, and let’s work really hard to compete.” Not one to back away from a challenge, De La Torre was recently chosen to serve as president of Texas Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (TALAS). A TALAS member since 2009, De La Torre says he has realized that a wellorganized, like-minded, mission-oriented organization can accomplish much more than any one individual. In his time as TALAS president, De La Torre hopes to grow the group’s membership so that ultimately the number of Latino administrators and superintendents will also increase. TALAS has a twofold mission of supporting Latino students while also finding

and preparing more Latino leaders for Texas’ public schools. “TALAS offers solidarity and support for the thousands of Latino leaders committed to significantly improving the educational landscape for all children, but especially our Latino children, who make up most of the students in Texas,” he says. “We have access to the most successful Latino superintendents, both retired and active, who have entered into a covenant with TALAS to increase the number of Latino leaders while improving educational outcomes for Latino children.” Through a strong mentoring program, TALAS connects those who are just beginning their journeys as instructional leaders with active or retired administrators. For two years, mentor and mentee meet and stay in contact, discussing skills and advice that might not be found in traditional master’s programs. “By exposing these individuals to not just the group of us, but for them to have one person they can seek counsel with when things come up, I think, is invaluable to them and prepares them for that next step in their career and, more importantly, significantly increases the likelihood that they will be successful.” DACIA RIVERS is editorial director of Texas School Business.

Texas Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (TALAS) Membership: TALAS membership is open to education leaders with an interest in the advancement of the Latino population in Texas public schools. Mission: TALAS, with an unrelenting commitment to improving learning outcomes for Latino learners, will provide leadership development, collective impact, advocacy and a proactive voice for Latino and nonLatino leaders who have a passion for serving the fastest growing student population in our state. Year founded: 2011 Website: talasedu.org

2022-23 Johnny L. Veselka

Scholarship

TASA Active or Student Members enrolled in accredited university doctoral programs in the field of education are eligible to apply for the Johnny L. Veselka Scholarship. The $2,500 scholarships provide financial assistance to TASA members who are doctoral students pursuing careers in educational leadership, with particular emphasis on the superintendency.

Apply by September 12! https://tasanet.org/awards/johnny-l-veselka-scholarship/ Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

21


THE ARTS

▲ Robin Scott, principal at Stafford Middle School in Frisco ISD, attends band class alongside students.

News in fine arts education

This is lifelong learning by Karen Cross

F

or years, Principal Robin Scott has watched through her office window as eager sixth graders met outside in the early days of school, showing off their first sounds on new instrument mouthpieces. Then — just months later — she marveled at those same students as they confidently performed full pieces of music. She’s always been intrigued by the exponential growth that beginners display over the span of one school year. Unlike her students at Stafford Middle School, Scott didn’t grow up with a strong music education. Back then, she simply didn’t have much interest in it. However, after working as an administrator in schools with excellent music educators and programs, her appreciation and respect for music education quickly grew. Since opening Stafford in 2008, she says she came to realize that it’s not just a music program; it’s where these students fit — it’s their home. Those of us who work for Texas Music Educators Association always get excited to learn about school administrators who champion the value of music education and support music educators in their important work. Until this spring though, we had never heard of an administrator who acted on their appreciation quite as wholeheartedly as principal Scott. For years, she has strongly supported music students, but last year, she became one.

From principal to beginner Last summer, Scott told Stafford Middle School band directors Laura Bell and Chase Rogers that she wanted to learn about music

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Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

and how to play an instrument. “I was just so intrigued by our kids and admired the program so much that I wanted to learn and be part of it. And I knew from the minute I said something that I was committed,” Scott explained. The directors informed her right away that she would play the clarinet. “At first I was surprised by their quick decision, but I’ve been through this enough — watching them help students choose— and I was certain they knew what was right for me.” As a clarinetist, she was set to join the sixth graders in Laura Bell’s second-period class. As the first day of school neared, Scott was both excited and anxious to start. “Even though your new peers are 11 years old, you still feel the stress to perform well,” she explained. “I thought — I’m 53 and these kids are 11 — surely I can do something they can do, but I also knew there are a lot of things they can do that I can’t!” Like the sixth graders seated next to her, Scott showed up daily, followed the directions of their teacher Ms. Bell, and quickly shed that initial stress. She knew that to succeed, she would need to make a commitment to do the required work, and commit is precisely what she did. Scott arrived at her office early to practice. She joined the class every day she was on campus. She completed every assessment. She took her turn when it was time for the dreaded down the row. She got tutoring from an eighth grader when she needed to catch up. “She


was more devoted and committed to the class than I could have ever imagined,” said Bell. On some Fridays, Scott missed school to travel with her husband to Arkansas to watch their son’s college football game. With her husband behind the wheel and her in the passenger seat, Scott set her music on the dash, connected with the second-period class over Google Meet on her phone, and played along with her sixth-grade classmates. “We got some strange looks along those trips!”

Learning made easier When discussing what it was like to be an adult beginner, Scott quickly responded that her challenges weren’t as much about learning music or the instrument as they were with being a student and a principal. “I told the other students my principal job sometimes gets in the way of my band class!” She said that because her teacher was so good at her job — breaking the learning process down so they could experience success along the way — it never seemed difficult. “She also put us at ease by conveying her own experiences and reminding us that she, too, was once a student. She tied our learning to other subjects, and she celebrated success so well. We might totally mess something up, and she would critique it, but she did so in a way that felt good and was motivating. She was always so affirming!” Instead of being the only one to offer students feedback, Bell taught them how to critique each other. At first, though, no one wanted to criticize their principal. Scott said, “After I played, the other students would just tell me I sounded good, but I knew it wasn’t good and reminded them I needed their honest feedback. Eventually, they got comfortable giving it.” Scott emphasized how this is a valuable aspect of music education — students gain the life lessons of being vulnerable, willing to fail, and learning from the process. “The whole environment was a safe space where we could fail, and boy did we fail sometimes! It was always clear that it was okay, and that this is what we do in life — we fail and we learn.” Unlike the limited observations typically afforded an administrator, as a student, Scott had the unique opportunity to witness great teaching in action every day. “Laura took herself and her job seriously, but she also knew she was working with sixth graders, and they need someone who can be goofy and silly at times. Her

▲ Robin Scott joined her school’s band classes to learn more about music.

patience was incredible, and she was assertive when she needed to be,” Scott explained. “She treated me like any other kid. If my embouchure wasn’t right or if I wasn’t tapping my foot in tempo, she’d point it out. I didn’t get a pass because I was the principal.”

Music education unlocks a whole new world After just one year in the clarinet class, Scott says she now hears music differently — in a more informed and curious way. She seeks to learn more about composers and the music’s history. “It gave me a greater appreciation for all fine arts and what it takes.” The experience has also deepened her perspective about the importance of music education in her students’ lives. “This is unlocking a whole new world for these students, and it’s helping them be ready for life—whether it’s a job, marriage, or anything else, they’re learning valuable how-to-succeed skills.” As important as she knows music education is, Scott emphasizes that teachers must remember that music study is a choice. “Your students are electing to come to you, so your job is to make them want to continue wanting to be there. With so many choices, you need to make sure your environment is welcoming and balance your high expectations with fun.” She also believes no middle schooler should be forced to choose one interest over another, and that means teachers in all the fine arts, other electives, and sports must work together. “Middle school is not the time to make students make those choices,” she stated.

Similarly, Scott doesn’t want to see students removed from a music class for remediation. “Don’t pull a kid for remediation from music class just because it’s an elective. You might change the course of their life or alter their future — while not on purpose, it can still be the result. There are often other ways.”

The joy of making music From that first day of creating sounds on a mouthpiece, through each week of incrementally building skills, to the point when she was able to play a full piece of music, Scott explains that she experienced true joy. “It was just so much fun!” And just like it is for young music students, she loved being part of the group. “I always admired how these kids had a group they belonged to, and now I was one of them. These are my people!” Scott did become one of them, but she also became their role model — demonstrating to them that no matter your age, you can keep challenging yourself to learn new skills. Reflecting on her experience from last year, Scott shared, “Being in that class was definitely the highlight of my year, and it’s in the top five in my 28 years in education. I was surprised at how quickly the year went, and I was so disappointed it was over. I realized that going to that class is what I looked forward to every day!” KAREN CROSS is communications manager of the Texas Music Educators Association. This article is reprinted from the August 2022 issue of Southwestern Musician and is published here with permission from Texas Music Educators Association. Images courtesy of Frisco ISD Communications. Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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Who’s News > Continued from page 17

as assistant principal of Katy Elementary. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Texas State University and a master’s degree in education administration from Lamar University.

Grapeland ISD

Rahsan Smith will begin the upcoming

Aimee Johnson has been hired to lead

Grapeland High School as principal. She comes to Grapeland from Palestine ISD, where was an assistant principal, and previously taught and coached in Elkhart ISD. She is a graduate of Stephen F. Austin State University and earned her master’s degree from Sam Houston State University.

Hermleigh ISD Veteran educator Jessie Ellerbe has been tapped to lead Hermleigh ISD as superintendent. An educator for 15 years, he was Ranger ISD’s middle school and high school principal and previously taught and coached in Comanche and Cross Plains ISDs.

Highland Park ISD (Dallas) Former Crowley ISD administrator Kevin Hunt now serves as principal of Highland Park Middle School. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Texas Christian University, where he also received his master’s degree in secondary education and doctorate in educational leadership. Newly appointed director of instruction/ curriculum specialist Mary Webb has joined the district from Frisco ISD, where she spent six years as managing director of elementary curriculum and instruction. She graduated from the University of Oklahoma and earned her master’s degree from Texas A&M University at Commerce and her doctorate from the University of North Texas. Four fine arts appointments have been made. They are: • Daren Jordan, band director, Highland Park High School; • Brittany Murphy, theatre director, Highland Park High School; • Lindsay Pfaff, assistant band director, McCulloch and Highland Park middle schools; • John Vanhook, band director, McCulloch Intermediate School and Highland Park Middle School.

Katy ISD Memorial Parkway Junior High welcomed principal Greg Kraus when the new school year begins. He initially taught and coached at Beckendorff Junior High and was most recently associate principal of Morton Ranch High. Now serving as Bryant Elementary School principal is Ashley Pierce, who began her career in 2007 and joined Katy ISD in 2016

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academic year as assistant superintendent for elementary leadership and support. He began his career in Houston ISD in 2001, joining Katy ISD in 2012 as an assistant principal. Kelly Stroud, new principal of McRoberts

Elementary School, has spent his career in Katy ISD, serving as assistant principal of Taylor High School since 2015. He is a graduate of the University of Houston with a master’s degree in education administration from Prairie View A&M University. Kaye Williams, new principal of Cinco Ranch

High School, previously served as a teacher and administrator in Spring Branch and Port Arthur ISDs and Lamar CISDs.

Keller ISD Heather Bennett comes to

her new role as principal of Hillwood Middle School from Central High School, where she was associate principal since 2019. Prior to joining Keller ISD, she was with Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD for eight years. She received her bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma State University and her master’s degree in counseling from Amberton University. Sarah Guerrero comes to

Keller from Olathe (Kan.) Unified School District, where she was assistant superintendent, to serve as principal of Timberview Middle School. An educator for 24 years, she has a bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University and master’s and doctoral degrees in educational leadership from Baker University. The new principal of Independence Elementary School is Lasonia Russell, former assistant principal of Fossil Hill Middle School. Prior to joining Keller ISD, she worked in Birdville and Everman ISDs. She received her bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in elementary education from Abilene Christian University. The following assistant principal assignments have been announced: • Morgan Peccarelli, Caprock Elementary School; • Diane Wilson, Keller Middle School.

Killeen ISD The new athletic coordinator and head football coach for Killeen High School is Josh Sadler, who comes to Killeen from serving as associate athletic director, middle school athletic coordinator and offensive coordinator at Temple High School in Temple ISD. The 20-year veteran coach also worked in Liberty and Sheldon ISDs.

Klein ISD New administrative appointments have been made in Klein ISD. They are: • Liz Edmonson, principal, Krimmel Intermediate School; • Trena Grice, principal, Epps Island Elementary School; • Meredith Moss, principal, Frank Elementary School; • Spring Payne, principal, Kleb Intermediate School; • Carissa Rodgers, principal, Krahn Elementary School; • Marlon Runnels, chief of police; • Heidi Sebren, principal, Mueller Elementary School; • Charla Wilson, principal, Mahaffey Elementary School; • August Wunderlich, associate superintendent of facility and school services.

Lago Vista ISD The district announces the appointment of Tina Pasak as assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction. An educator for 24 years, she comes to Lago Vista from Leander ISD, where she was principal of River Place Elementary School. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston at Victoria and her master’s degree from Lamar University.

Lake Travis ISD The district’s new executive director of curriculum and instruction, Lyndsae Benton, has spent her 25 year career as a teacher and administrator in Crowley, Everman and Waco ISDs. She came to Lake Travis ISD in 2021 as director of elementary curriculum and instruction. Lake Travis ISD has chosen Shannon Gill as director of fine arts. She has 20 years of experience, including assignments in Zapata, Georgetown, Grapevine and Marlin ISDs and at Southwestern University. She most recently was director of bands for Belton ISD. Her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music education were awarded from Texas State University.


Amanda Prehn has been selected to serve

as director of elementary curriculum and instruction. She joined Lake Travis ISD in 2015 and most recently was principal of Bee Cave Middle School. Now leading West Cypress Hills Elementary School as principal is Amy Russ, a 20-year educator who has worked in the Austin, Canyon and Hays school districts. She earned her bachelor’s degree and her master’s degree in educational leadership from West Texas A&M University.

Lamar CISD Shannon Hood now

fills the position of area superintendent. A graduate of the University of Houston, where she also earned her master’s degree, she holds a doctorate from Texas A&M University. She was most recently principal of Frost Elementary School. Karen Mumphord, now

serving as director of pre-K and after-school programs, comes to her new position from Dickinson Elementary, where she was principal. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Houston at Victoria and a doctorate from Texas A&M University. Juan Nava, newly appointed

director of student discipline, was previously principal of Terry High School. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Texas State University and his master’s degree from Prairie View A&M University. In addition, the following principals are announced:

• Aide Piña, Jackson Elementary School; • Andrea Richard, Bowie Elementary School; • Brian Roberson, Terry High School; • Toni Scott, Wertheimer Middle School.

Laredo ISD Angel Ramos has been named principal of the

Trevino School of Communications and Fine Arts. The 21-year educator was an assistant principal of Nixon High School and principal of the Lara Academy. He is a graduate of Texas State University with a master’s degree in education administration from Texas A&M International University.

Leander ISD Former Cypress Elementary School principal Kristen Alex has been named an area superintendent. She began her career in 1996, coming to Leander ISD in 2011 as a special education instructional assistant. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Texas State University and her master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Texas Permian Basin. Amy Sharp, now serving

as principal of River Place Elementary School, joins Leander ISD from Lake Travis ISD, where she was assistant principal of Lakeway Elementary. The Baylor University graduate previously worked in Conroe, Spring, Eanes and Austin ISD. She earned her master’s degree from the University of Maryland and her doctorate from Baylor.

• Laci Crowson, Williams Elementary School;

Winkley Elementary School welcomed Erin Uhlaender as its new principal in August. The 10-year education veteran was an assistant principal at Tarvin Elementary School and previously worked in Lockhart, Dripping Springs and Leander ISDs. She received her bachelor’s degree from Hardin-Simmons University and her master’s degree from Lamar University.

• Courtney Dickey, Culver Elementary School;

Lewisville ISD

• Channon Almendarez, Dickinson Elementary School; • Shawanda Anderson, Pink Elementary School; • Monica Auffant, Wessendorff Middle School;

• Tiffany Foster, Frost Elementary School; • Thomas Graham, Wright Junior High School; • Janice Harvey, Austin Elementary School; • Creighton Jaster, Roberts Middle School; • Rachel Patterson, Hutchison Elementary School;

Jill Asher, principal of Parkway

Elementary School, comes to Lewisville from Memphis, Tenn., where she was an elementary principal. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia and her master’s degree from the University of Memphis.

Central Elementary has welcomed Shaunna Buck as principal. She was Southridge Elementary’s assistant principal for the past five years. The 22-year educator received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Austin College. Jaime Clark has accepted the position of

chief of elementary schools. An educator since 2001, she most recently was principal of Castle Hills Elementary. Now serving as principal of Castle Hills Elementary School is Christine Hinkle, who was an elementary principal in California before serving as principal of Marcus High School in Lewisville ISD. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from California State University at Fullerton and a doctorate from Brandman University. Garden Ridge Elementary School’s new principal, April Kenely, comes to Lewisville from Allen ISD, where she was an assistant principal. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Portland and her master’s degree from the University of Washington. Lindsay McLennan, newly

appointed principal of Lewisville High School Killough, was previously associate principal of The Colony High School. The University of North Texas graduate earned her master’s degree from Concordia University. Tracy Rehfuss is now principal of Hicks

Elementary School, where she was assistant principal since 2017. Now serving as principal of Marcus 9th Grade Campus is Jessica True, former assistant principal of Marcus High School. The Student Success Center has a new principal. Michael Wetchensky previously served as associate principal there. Meredith Whitehouse, new principal of the

STEM Academy at Bridlewood Elementary School, is a former assistant principal at Heritage Elementary. She began her career in Keller Elementary and has been with Lewisville ISD for 11 years.

> See Who’s News, page 26 Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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Who’s News > Continued from page 25

Lockhart ISD A new director of human resources is in place for Lockhart ISD. Susan Fambrough is a 22year educator who comes to Lockhart from Eanes ISD in Austin, where she was chief learning officer. She is a graduate of the University of Southern Maine and holds a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Baylor University.

Longview ISD After 27 years in education, Christi Coleman now serves as principal of Hudson PEP (Planned Enrichment Program). She most recently was a curriculum program support specialist at the school. Longview ISD has introduced Chuck Isaac as principal of Foster Middle School. He comes to his new position from Big Sandy ISD, where he was an assistant principal. He is a graduate of Jarvis Christian College with a master’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University.

Lufkin ISD Lufkin ISD has named Clarence Bennett as principal of the district’s ACE/DAEP Center. He was an assistant principal at Lufkin High since 2004 and previously worked in Chapel Hill and Jacksonville ISDs. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Southern Methodist University and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Stephen F. Austin State University.

Lumberton ISD Lumberton ISD has hired its first director of safety, security and student services. Prior to joining LISD, Thomas Lane spent his career with the Arizona Highway Patrol Bureau, retiring as its division director for enforcement and compliance.

McKinney ISD McKinney North High School’s head football coach, Mike Fecci, has been promoted to associate athletic director for McKinney ISD. He spent 13 seasons with McKinney North.

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Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

Darla Jackson, longtime

McKinney ISD educator and former principal of Evans Middle School, is now the district’s director of human resources. She began her career in 1997 in Arlington ISD before joining McKinney ISD. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Texas Wesleyan University and a master’s degree in educational administration from Lamar University. Paula Kent, who was associate

principal of McKinney North High School since 2017, is now principal of Evans Middle School. She is a graduate of East Texas State University with a master’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University and a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of North Texas.

Manor ISD The new head basketball coach at Manor High School is John Smith, who held the same position at Austin ISD’s Northeast Early College High School. He previously coached in San Antonio’s Judson ISD and in Arlington and Temple ISDs.

Mason ISD Brannon Kidd, former Weatherford ISD high

school principal, is now superintendent of Mason ISD.

Medina Valley ISD

Rockwall ISD. He returned to Mesquite in 2015. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Texas A&M University. Henrie Elementary School’s new principal is Jill Vincent, who comes to Mesquite from Cedar Hill ISD, where she was executive director of elementary school leadership. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and her master’s degree in educational leadership from Dallas Baptist University.

Midland ISD Tim Allen has been chosen to

fill the newly created position of emergency management coordinator. A graduate of Texas A&M University, he is a former officer in the U.S. Army Reserve and spent the past 10 years as an intelligence section chief for the Department of Homeland Security. The district’s new school improvement officer is Miguel Serrano, who comes to Midland from Las Cruces (N.M.) Public Schools, where he was chief operations officer. He previously spent 20 years with El Paso’s Socorro ISD. He holds bachelor’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Texas at El Paso and a master’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University. Nine new principal assignments have also been made for the district. They are: • Kristin Albaugh, Midland Alternative Program (MAP);

Former Wills Point ISD superintendent Scott Caloss now holds the top position in Medina Valley ISD.

• Crystal Clark, Abell Junior High School;

Mesquite ISD

• Maxine Gonzales, Henderson Elementary School;

Jeff Johnson, newly

appointed principal of Mesquite High School, has 21 years of experience as an educator, 12 of those with Mesquite ISD. He was most recently principal of the Mesquite Academy and previously served as a teacher and coach in Clear Creek and Mabank ISDs. He is a graduate of Henderson State University with a master’s degree in educational administration from Lamar University. Bret Peterson will begin the

2022-23 academic year as principal of Agnew Middle School. The Mesquite High School alumnus started his career at Agnew in 2009 before transferring to

• Krista Daniel, Bunche Elementary School;

• Iris Jimenez, Scharbauer Elementary School; • Cristina Rivera, Alamo Junior High; • Emily Roberts, Emerson Elementary School; • Morgan Robertson, Franks Elementary School; • Andrea Rodriguez, Parker Elementary School.

Midway ISD (Waco) One of Midway ISD’s new elementary schools, Chapel Park Elementary, will be led by Kim Hawkins. Formerly an assistant principal at Woodway Elementary, she previously taught in Conroe and CypressFairbanks ISDs. She is a graduate of Sam


Houston State University with a master’s degree in educational administration from Lamar University. The district’s second new elementary, Park Hill Elementary School, will have Mandy Johnson as principal when its doors open this fall. She spent the past six years as principal of Castleman Creek Elementary. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and a master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Mary Hardin Baylor.

Moody ISD Matt Hurst has accepted the job of head

football coach and assistant athletic director. He holds a master’s degree from Lamar University and previously coached in Robinson and Lorena ISDs.

Nacogdoches ISD After serving for two years as principal of Brooks-Quinn-Jones Elementary School, Gerald Fonzie now leads McMichael Middle School. An educator for 12 years, he holds a bachelor’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University, where he also earned his master’s degree in education administration. Dana Solomon, new principal of Moses

Elementary School, is a former assistant principal at Brooks-Quinn-Jones Elementary. She previously served as a teacher and administrator in Frisco ISD and holds a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of North Texas. The Chumbley Academy for Success has welcomed Brian Tarvin as principal. He comes to Nacogdoches from Rusk ISD, where he was principal of the alternative education program. Prior to that assignment, he was with Round Rock and New Caney ISDs. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University and a master’s degree from Prairie View A&M University. Now leading Brooks-Quinn-Jones Elementary School as principal is Amber Wilson, who for three years was an assistant principal at that campus. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of North Texas and her master’s degree in education leadership from Stephen F. Austin State University.

Navarro ISD Luke Morales has been promoted to

superintendent after serving as the district’s deputy superintendent and junior high school principal.

Northside ISD (San Antonio) The following administrative appointments have been approved for the district: • Latia Bishop, principal, Steubing Elementary School;

• Susan Cleveland, director of research and development;

administration from the University of Texas at Tyler.

• Cindy Gibson, principal, Los Reyes Elementary School;

Pleasanton ISD

• Lucy Gomez, principal, Carnahan Elementary School;

• Candace Maldonado, principal, Meadow Village Elementary School;

Pleasanton ISD has welcomed a new chief of police, Michael Gilbert. A graduate of Pleasanton High School, he returns to his hometown with 15 years of experience as a school law enforcement officer, including stints in San Antonio, Southwest and Jourdanton ISDs.

• Migdalia Powers, principal, Esparza Elementary School;

Premont ISD

• Jennifer Hilbrich, principal, Boone Elementary School; • Scott McKenzie, director of recruiting and retention;

• Andi Sosa, executive director of elementary administration.

Plainview ISD Plainview ISD announces the appointment of Marc Puente as head boys’ basketball coach. Now in his fourteenth year as a coach and administrator, he holds a master’s degree in educational leadership and is working on a doctorate from Texas Tech University.

Plano ISD New deputy superintendent for leadership and operations Selenda Anderson has spent 20 of her 26 years as an educator in Plano ISD, serving as a campus and district administrator since 2002. She received her bachelor’s degree from Radford University, her master’s degree from Texas A&M University at Commerce and her doctorate in educational leadership from Dallas Baptist University. Lisa Wilson has joined Plano

ISD as deputy superintendent for teaching, learning and life readiness. She was most recently assistant superintendent for education services in Dallas’ Highland Park ISD. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri and a master’s degree from MidAmerica Nazarene University.

Pleasant Grove ISD A director of marketing and communications is in place for the district. Haley Turner, who most recently was ESC Region 8’s marketing and communications specialist, brings 10 years of experience in the field to her new position. She is a graduate of the University of Arkansas and holds two master’s degrees, in curriculum and instruction from Texas A&M University at Texarkana and in education

New superintendent Mike Barrera is a native of Premont, where he began his career in 1984 as an agriculture teacher. His last position was superintendent of Ben BoltPolito Blanco, from which he retired in January. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Angelo State University, a master’s degree from Texas State University, and a doctorate in education administration from Oklahoma State University.

Rockwall ISD Kelli Crossland, former principal of Rochell

Elementary School, now leads Hays Elementary. She spent 12 years at Williams Middle School and brings five years of administrative experience to her new position.

Now serving as principal of Cullins-Lake Pointe Elementary School is Kelly Haack, who was the school’s assistant principal for the past four years. She holds a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Texas A&M University at Commerce. The position of director of safety and security has been filled by Michael Hillman, who joins the district with 30 years of law enforcement and security experience. He has worked as a police officer and was most recently an FBI special agent. Lindy Lewis, who was principal of Parks-

Heath Elementary School, now holds that position at Rochell Elementary. Prior to leading Parks-Heath for two years, she was an assistant principal at Jones and Hays elementaries. Amy Sparks has joined Parks-Heath

Elementary School as principal, coming to her new position with 18 years of experience in education, including stints as assistant principal of Jones Elementary and elementary summer school principal. She is a graduate of Texas Tech University with a master’s degree in educational administration from Lamar University.

> See Who’s News, page 32 Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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Calendar Professional development & events O C TO BE R October 3 TASBO Committee Connect Courtyard Austin, Austin For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org TASBO Workshop: Getting Things Done ESC Region 7, Kilgore For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $375; nonmembers, $425. October 3-4 TASPA Fall Support Staff Conference Kalahari Resort and Conference Center, Round Rock For more info, (512) 494-9353. www.taspa.org Cost: Early registration (through Sept. 7): Members, $190; nonmembers, $225; retired, $95. Regular registration (through Sept. 17): Members, $210; nonmembers, $245; retired, $115. Late registration (through Sept. 29): Members, $225; nonmembers, $260; retired, $130. Onsite registration: Members, $240; nonmembers, $270; retired, $145. October 4 TASBO Workshop: At-Risk Student Identification, Review and Funding Impact Virtual event For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $85; nonmembers, $135.

October 4-5 TASB Workshop: HR for Campus Leaders Virtual event For more info, (512) 467-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org Cost: $225. TASBO Workshop: Leadership Fundamentals ESC Region 7, Kilgore For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $550; nonmembers, $600. October 4-6 TASA/CMSi Curriculum Management Audit Training, Level 1 TASA offices, Austin For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org Cost: Members, $800; nonmembers, $900. October 5 ED311 Back to School Workshop Civic and Convention Center, New Braunfels, or online (online available until Dec. 5) For more info, (512) 478-2113. www.ed311.com Cost: Conference and digital workbook, $180; conference and printed workbook, $205. TASA Texas Public Accountability Consortium (TPAC) Meeting Georgetown ISD For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.futurereadytx.org/keyplayers/tpac

TASBO Workshop: Fiscal, State and Federal Grants Manual TASBO offices, Austin For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285.

TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Houston Area Cohort (session 2 of 6) Cypress-Fairbanks ISD, Cypress For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org

TRTA Fall Conference, District 7 Holiday Inn Conference Center, Tyler For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org

TASSP Region 9 Meeting ESC Region 9, Wichita Falls For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org

TRTA Fall Conference, District 14 ESC Region 14, Abilene For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org

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TASSP Region 17 Meeting Location TBA, Lubbock area For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org

TEPSA Region 9 Meeting ESC Region 9, Wichita Falls For more info, (512) 478-5268 or (800) 252-3621. www.tepsa.org October 6 TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Virtual Cohort (session 2 of 6) Virtual event For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org TEPSA Region 6 Meeting Austin Middle School, Bryan For more info, (512) 478-5268 or (800) 252-3621. www.tepsa.org TEPSA Region 14 Meeting Miguel’s Cafe, Abilene For more info, (512) 478-5268 or (800) 252-3621. www.tepsa.org TRTA Fall Conference, District 6 ESC Region 6, Huntsville For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org TRTA Fall Conference, District 16 ESC Region 16, Amarillo For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org October 7 TETL Fall Summit San Antonio ISD, San Antonio For more info, (512) 855-458-9286. www.tetl.org October 10 TASBO Workshop: Payroll Fundamentals Embassy Suites, San Antonio, or online For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285. TASBO Workshop: Personnel Fundamentals Embassy Suites, San Antonio or online For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285.

October 11 TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Austin/San Antonio Cohort (session 2 of 6) North East ISD, San Antonio For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org TEPSA Region 1 Meeting Reyna’s Restaurant, Harlingen For more info, (512) 478-5268 or (800) 252-3621. www.tepsa.org TSPRA Regional Meeting, East Texas Area Longview ISD, Longview For more info, (512) 474-9107. www.tspra.org October 11-12 TASBO Payroll and Personnel Academy Embassy Suites, San Antonio, or online For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $335; nonmembers, $385. THSADA Fall Forum Hilton del Norte, San Antonio For more info, (832) 623-7803. www.thsada.com October 11-13 TASA/CMSi Curriculum Management Audit Training, Level 1 Virtual event For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org Cost: Members, $800; nonmembers, $900. October 12 TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Dallas Area Cohort (session 2 of 6) Allen ISD, Allen For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org TASBO Workshop: ACT 105A – Basic Governmental Accounting, Part 1 ESC Region 1, Edinburg For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $195; nonmembers, $245.


TASBO Workshop: Commodity Costs for Purchasing ESC Region 20, San Antonio For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285. TASBO Workshop: Purchasing Fundamentals Embassy Suites, San Antonio, or online For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285. TASSP Region 16 Meeting ESC Region 16, Amarillo For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org TEPSA Region 16 Meeting ESC Region 16, Amarillo For more info, (512) 478-5268 or (800) 252-3621. www.tepsa.org October 12-13 TASB Workshop: Navigating Educator Certification Virtual event For more info, (512) 467-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org Cost: $225. Texas ASCD Curriculum Leadership Academy 38, HEB ISD (session 1 of 3) Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD, Bedford For more info, (512) 477-8200 or (800) 717-2723. www.txascd.org October 13 TASB Student Solutions Series: Section 504 Operating Procedures Virtual event For more info, (512) 457-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org TRTA Fall Conference, District 8 ESC Region 8, Pittsburg For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org October 13-14 TASBO Purchasing Academy Embassy Suites, San Antonio, or online For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $335; nonmembers, $385. October 14 ED311 Back to School Workshop ESC 7, Kilgore, or online (online

available until Dec. 14) For more info, (512) 478-2113. www.ed311.com Cost: Conference and digital workbook, $180; conference and printed workbook, $205. TRTA Fall Conference, District 1 Zapata County Community Center, Zapata For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org TSPRA Regional Meeting, Central Texas Area Georgetown ISD, Georgetown For more info, (512) 474-9107. www.tspra.org October 17 TRTA Fall Conference, District 20 St. Peter the Apostle Catholic Church, Boerne For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org October 17-18 TEPSA Assistant Principals’ Conference Renaissance Hotel, Austin For more info, (512) 478-5268 or (800) 252-3621. www.tepsa.org Cost: Early registration (by Oct. 3): Members, $279; nonmembers, $329. Regular registration (after Oct. 3): Members, $339; nonmembers, $389. October 18 TRTA Fall Conference, District 9 ESC Region 9, Wichita Falls For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org TRTA Fall Conference, District 18 ESC Region 18, Midland For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org October 18-20 TASA/CMSi Curriculum Management Audit Training, Level 2 TASA offices, Austin For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org Cost: Members, $800; nonmembers, $900. October 19 TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Corpus Christi/Victoria Cohort (session 2 of 6) Corpus Christi ISD, Corpus Christi For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org

TASSP Region 10 Meeting Spring Creek BBQ, Richardson For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org

www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $335; nonmembers, $385. October 25 TASA Executive Leadership Group (session 2 of 5) Online For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org

TRTA Fall Conference, District 11 ESC Region 11, White Settlement For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org

TASBO Tax Series: Preparing and Filing 941s for Tax Year 2022 Online event For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $85; nonmembers, $135.

October 19-20 TASBO Workshop: PEIMS Fundamentals Online event For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285.

TRTA Fall Conference, District 15 First United Methodist Church, Bangs For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org

October 20 TRTA Fall Conference, District 3 First Baptist Church, Goliad For more info, (512) a476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org

October 25-27 TASA/CMSi Curriculum Management Audit Training, Level 2 Virtual event For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org Cost: Members, $800; nonmembers, $900.

TRTA Fall Conference, District 19 ESC Region 19, El Paso For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org TSPRA Regional Meeting, Houston/Beaumont Area Goose Creek CISD, Baytown For more info, (512) 474-9107. www.tspra.org

TASA Future-Ready Superintendents Leadership Network (session 1 of 3) Northside ISD, San Antonio For more info, (512) 477-6361. https://www.futurereadytx.org/ key-players/frsln

October 20-21 TASB Conference for Administrative Professionals TASB offices, Austin For more info, (512) 467-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org

October 26 TASSP Region 11 Meeting Joe T. Garcia’s, Fort Worth For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org

October 22-23 Texas ASCD Transformative Principal Leadership Academy, Cypress-Fairbanks ISD Hyatt Regency, Houston For more info, (512) 477-8200 or (800) 717-2723. www.txascd.org

TCASE Ignite Academy for New and Aspiring Directors (session 2 of 10) Virtual event For more info, (512) 474-4492 or (888) 433-4492. www.tcase.org Cost: Administrators and associate members, $1,070 for full academy; nonmembers, $1,270.

October 23-25 Texas ASCD Annual Conference Hyatt Regency, Houston For more info, (512) 477-8200 or (800) 717-2723. www.txascd.org October 24 TRTA Fall Conference, District 10 ESC Region 10, Richardson For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org October 24-26 TASBO PEIMS Academy Online event For more info, (512) 462-1711.

TRTA Fall Conference, District 2 Holiday Inn Airport, Corpus Christi For more info, (512) 476-1622 or (800) 880-1650. www.trta.org

> See Calendar, page 30 Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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> Continued from page 29 October 26-27 TASA/N2 Learning Principals’ Institute (session 2 of 6) Hilton Park Cities, Dallas For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org TASBO Accounting and Finance Academy Embassy Suites by Hilton, Frisco, or online For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $335; nonmembers, $385. October 27 TEPSA Region 7 Meeting Potpourri House, Tyler For more info, (512) 478-5268 or (800) 252-3621. www.tepsa.org October 27-28 TASBO School Operations Conference Embassy Suites by Hilton, Frisco For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, 335; nonmembers, $385.

N OV E M BE R November 1 TASBO Workshop: Finance and CTE Hyatt Regency West, Houston For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: $235. November 2 TASBO Workshop: Budget Fundamentals Hyatt Regency West, Houston, or online For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285. TASSP Region 15 Meeting Location TBA, San Angelo area For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org TASSP Region 18 Meeting Location TBA, Midland/Odessa area For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org November 2-3 TASA First-Time Superintendents Academy (session 3 of 4) Marriott North, Round Rock For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org

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November 3-4 TASBO Budget Academy Hyatt Regency West, Houston, or online For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $325; nonmembers, $385. November 6-7 TEPSA Grow Leadership Conference Renaissance Hotel, Austin For more info, (512) 478-5268 or (800) 252-3621. www.tepsa.org Cost: Early registration (until Oct. 7): $399. After Oct. 7: $499. November 7-8 TASA/CMSi Curriculum Management Planning Workshop TASA offices, Austin For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org Cost: Members, $525; nonmembers, $575. TASB HR Academy Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center, Georgetown For more info, (512) 467-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org Cost: Early registration (until Oct. 17): $385. Late registration (closes Oct. 31): $425. TASB Seminar: Advanced HR Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center, Georgetown For more info, (512) 467-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org Cost: Early registration (until Oct. 17): $385. Late registration (closes Oct. 31): $425. November 8 TASBO Workshop: Project Management TASBO offices, Austin For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285. November 9 TASBO Workshop: ACT105B – Basic Governmental Accounting, Part 2 ESC Region 1, Edinburg For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $195; nonmembers, $245. TASSP Region 14 Meeting ESC Region 14, Abilene For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org

November 9-11 TASA/CMSi Curriculum Writing Workshop[ TASA offices, Austin For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org Cost: Members, $600; nonmembers, $650. TCA Annual Professional Growth Conference Sheraton Hotel, Dallas For more info, (512) 472-3405. www.txca.org November 10 TASB Student Solutions Series: Discipline of Students with Disabilities, Part III Virtual event For more info, (512) 467-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org November 10-11 TASBO Synergy 2022 Courtyard by Marriott, Pflugerville, or online For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $335; nonmembers, $385. Texas ASCD Transformative Principal Leadership Academy, CFISD (session 3 of 3) Cypress-Fairbanks ISD, Cypress For more info, (512) 477-8200 or (800) 717-2723. www.txascd.org November 11 TSPRA Regional Meeting, Central Texas Area Leander ISD, Leander For more info, (512) 474-9107. www.tspra.org TSPRA Regional Meeting, Houston/Beaumont Area Friendswood ISD, Friendswood For more info, (512) 474-9107. www.tspra.org November 12 TEPSA Region 3 Meeting Zoom meeting For more info, (512) 478-5268 or (800) 252-3621. www.tepsa.org November 14 TASBO Workshop: Budget Development for Campus Principals TASBO offices, Austin For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285. November 15 TASBO Workshop: FMLA Basics for Supervisors Online event

For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $85; nonmembers, $135. TSPRA Regional Meeting, East Texas Area Jacksonville ISD, Jacksonville For more info, (512) 474-9107. www.tspra.org November 16 TASSP Region 2 Meeting Location TBA, Corpus Christi area For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org TASSP Region 8 Meeting Zoom meeting For more info, (512) 443-2100. www.tassp.org November 16-17 TASB HR Services Training: Service Record Management Virtual event For more info, (512) 467-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org Cost: $225. Texas ASCD Curriculum Leadership Academy 38, HEB ISD (session 2 of 3) Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD, Bedford For more info, (512) 477-8200 or (800) 717-2723. www.txascd.org November 18 TASA/TASB/TASBO Budget Cohort for Texas District Leaders (session 2 of 8) Virtual event For more info, (512) 462-1711. http://bit.ly/budget-cohort-22-23 November 29 TASA Executive Leadership Group (session 3 of 6) Online For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org TASBO Workshop: Finance and CTE Embassy Suites and Convention Center, Denton For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: $235. November 29-30 TASBO Workshop: Leadership Fundamentals Mansfield ISD, Mansfield For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $550; nonmembers, $600. TASBO Workshop: Leadership Fundamentals San Angelo ISD, San Angelo For more info, (512) 462-1711.


www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $550; nonmembers, $600. November 30 TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Houston Area Cohort (session 3 of 6) Cypress-Fairbanks ISD, Cypress For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org TCASE Ignite Academy for New and Aspiring Directors (session 3 of 10) Virtual event For more info, (512) 474-4492 or (888) 433-4492. www.tcase.org Cost: Administrators and associate members, $1,070; nonmembers, $1,270. November 30-December 1 TASA Future-Ready Superintendents Leadership Network (session 2 of 3) Tomball ISD, Tomball For more info, (512) 477-6361. https://www.futurereadytx.org/ key-players/frsln/ TASB HR Services Training: Spending Wisely – The Intersection of Staffing and Pay Virtual event For more info, (512) 467-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org Cost: $225.

D EC E M B E R December 1 TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Austin/San Antonio Cohort (session 3 of 6) North East ISD, San Antonio For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org

TASA/N2 Learning Principals’ Institute (session 3 of 6) Hilton Post Oak, Houston For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org

TASBO Project Management Workshop ESC Region 20, San Antonio For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $235; nonmembers, $285.

December 7-9 TARS/TAMS Legislative Conference Lakeway Resort, Lakeway For more info, (512) 372-5821. www.tarsed.org

TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Dallas Area Cohort (session 3 of 6) Allen ISD, Allen For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org

December 8 TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Virtual Cohort (session 3 of 6) Virtual event For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org

January 18 TCASE Ignite Academy for New and Aspiring Directors (session 5 of 10) Virtual event For more info, (512) 477-8200 or (800) 717-2723. www.tcase.org Cost: Administrators and associate members, $1,070 for full academy; nonmembers, $1,270.

TASBO Tax Series: Preparing and Filing W2s for Tax Year 2022 Online event For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $85; nonmembers, $135.

December 12 TASA/N2 Learning Assistant Principal Leadership Academy, Corpus Christi/Victoria Cohort (session 3 of 6) Corpus Christi ISD, Corpus Christi For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org

January 18-19 Texas ASCD Curriculum Leadership Academy 39, ESC Region 16 (session 1 of 3) ESC Region 16, Amarillo For more info, (512) 477-8200 or (800) 717-2723. www.txascd.org

TSPRA Regional Meeting, West Central Texas Area Location TBA, Waco For more info, (512) 474- 9107. www.tspra.org

December 14 TCASE Ignite Academy for New and Aspiring Directors (session 4 of 10) Virtual event December 5-7 For more info, (512) 474-4492 or TARS/TAMS Pre-Conference (888) 433-4492. Superintendent and CFO Academy www.tcase.org Lakeway Resort, Lakeway Cost: Administrators and associate For more info, (512) 372-5821. members, $1,070 for full academy; www.tarsed.org nonmembers, $1,270.

November 30-December 2 TAGT Annual Conference Marriott Marquis, Houston For more info, (512) 499-8248. www.txgifted.org Cost: Early registration (by Sept. 30): Members, $389; nonmembers, $499. Regular registration (Oct. 1-Nov. 8): Members, $449; nonmembers, $559. Late registration (Nov. 9 and beyond): Members, $499; nonmembers, $609

TASPA Winter Conference Kalahari Resort and Conference Center, Round Rock For more info, (512) 494-9353. www.taspa.org

November 30-December 3 TAHPERD Annual Conference Omni Hotel, Corpus Christi For more info, (512) 459-1299. www.tahperd.org Cost: Early Bird registration: Professional, associate and outof-state members, $150; retired members, $45; student members, $35. Pre-registration: Professional, associate and out-of-state members, $170; retired members, $45; student members, $35. Late registration: Professional, associate and out-of-state members, $190; retired members, $55; student members, $45.

TASBO Tax Series: Preparing and Filing 1099s for Tax Year 2022 Online event For more info, (512) 462-1711. www.tasbo.org Cost: Members, $85; nonmembers, $135.

December 6 TASA/TASB/TASBO Budget Cohort for Texas District Leaders (session 3 of 8) Virtual event For more info, (512) 462-1711. http://bit.ly/budget-cohort-22-23

December 6-7 TASA/N2 Learning Executive Leadership Institute (session 2 of 4) Hilton Post Oak, Houston For more info, (972) 515-2268. https://www.n2learning.org

JANUARY January 10-11 Texas ASCD Curriculum Leadership Academy 38, HEB ISD (session 3 of 3) Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD, Bedford For more info, (512) 477-8200 or (800) 717-2723. www.txascd.org January 12 TASB Student Solutions Series: Collaboration 101 Virtual event For more info, (512) 467-0222 or (800) 580-8272. www.tasb.org January 17 TASA Executive Leadership Group (session 4 of 5) Online For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org

TSPRA Regional Meeting, Houston/Beaumont Area Tomball ISD, Tomball For more info, (512) 474-9107. www.tspra.org January 23-24 Transformative Principal Leadership Academy, Kilgore (session 1 of 3) ESC Region 7, Kilgore For more info, (512) 477-8200 or (800) 717-2723. www.txascd.org January 28-29 TCWSE Annual Conference Convention Center, Austin For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tcwse.org January 29-February 1 TASA Aspiring Superintendents Academy Convention Center, Austin For more into, (512) 477-6361. www.tasanet.org TASA Midwinter Conference Convention Center, Austin For more info, (512) 477-6361. www.tasamidwinter.org January 30 TASA/TASB/TASBO Budget Cohort for Texas District Leaders Convention Center, Austin For more info, (512) 462-1711. http://bit.ly/budget-cohort-22-23 ◄

Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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Who’s News > Continued from page 27

Round Rock ISD Pond Springs Elementary School now has Sjoukje Brown as principal. The 21-year education veteran most recently was assistant principal of Mott Elementary in Pflugerville ISD and previously spent seven years as an elementary principal in Illinois. Now leading Westwood High School as principal is Erin Campbell, who was associate principal there since 2019. She also served as assistant principal at Austin ISD’s Anderson High.

Sherman ISD Jeff Cordell is Sherman ISD’s

new athletic director. His 15-year career has included serving as head football coach and athletic director in Gainesville, Greenville, Andrews, Sonora and, most recently, Crane ISDs.

Sherman Middle School’s new principal, Scott Johnston, spent the past two years as S&S CISD’s high school principal. He previously taught and worked as an administrator in Lancaster, Grand Prairie, McKinney and Anna ISDs. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Texas and a master’s degree in education administration from Lamar University. The district has named Mandi Lewis chief financial officer. Lewis is in her 20th year as an educator, the past 14 with Sherman ISD.

Karl Unger, new principal of

the Joe Lee Johnson STEAM Academy, comes to Round Rock from Kansas City (Mo.), where he was principal of Banneker Elementary School. Prior to that assignment, he was dean of students at Houston ISD’s Gregory-Lincoln Education Center. A new police chief is in place in Round Rock ISD. Dennis Weiner, former assistant police chief for the Palm Beach County (Fla.) school district, has 30 years of law enforcement experience, including serving as chief of police in Coral Gables, Fla., and Oyster Bay, N.Y.

San Antonio ISD Fred Anthony, who was with

San Antonio’s Harlandale ISD for 27 years, the past nine as principal of Harlandale High School, is now San Antonio ISD’s executive director of athletics.

Seguin ISD New chief technology officer Stephen Gonzalez was promoted to that position from serving as director of digital learning for the past two years. Before joining Seguin ISD, he was Wimberley ISD’s career and technology education department chair.

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Sherman ISD has created a new position, fine arts coordinator, and tapped Kalyn McAlester to fill it. She has been with the district for eight years, most recently as principal of Fairview Elementary School. New deputy superintendent Thomas O’Neal has been an educator for 30 years, 10 of those in Sherman ISD. He returns to the district from Anna ISD, where he has been an administrator for the past 14 years. He is a graduate of Cameron University with a master’s degree from the University of Texas of the Permian Basin and his doctorate in educational leadership from the University of North Texas.

Snook ISD New superintendent Megan Pape began her career 13 years ago in Bryan ISD and most recently was director of inclusive learning and innovation for Bellville ISD.

Spring ISD Paul Carampatan, newly appointed director

of student affairs, came to the district in 2015 and most recently was principal of Dueitt Middle School.

New chief of academics Kregg Cuellar comes to Spring from Midland ISD, where he was deputy superintendent. His 20-year career has also included administrative assignments in Portland, Ore., Baltimore, Md., and Houston ISD.

Now leading Dueitt Middle School is Kimberly Dussette. An educator for 14 years, she comes to Spring from Aldine ISD, where she was principal of Teague Middle School. LaTracy Harris is the district’s new assistant

superintendent of academics. She has spent her 18-year career with the district and was previously director of leadership development for elementary schools. Sarahdia Johnson has been appointed

principal of Hoyland Elementary School. She most recently served the district as a digital learning-literacy/math instructional coach at the School for International Studies at Bammel. Jenkins Elementary School’s new principal, Cecily Parker, is a 22-year educator who joined Spring ISD in 2008. She previously was Westfield High School’s Ninth Grade Center associate principal. Hirsch Elementary School will welcome LaToya Patterson as principal this fall. A product of Spring ISD schools, she has served as a teacher, team leader, assistant principal and, most recently, principal resident. The new assistant superintendent for research, accountability and testing is Michelle Starr, a 30-year educator who has been with the district since 2000. The new principal of the School for International Studies at Bammel is Shalynndrea Sterling-Teel, who had been leading the campus on an interim basis. She previously worked in Beaumont ISD and West Orange-Cove CISD before coming to Spring in 2015. Now serving as assistant superintendent of high schools is Tracey Walker, who has spent most of her 25-year career in Spring ISD, most recently as director of leadership development for secondary schools. Tiffany Weston has accepted the position of

director of teacher leadership development after spending the past eight years as principal of Jenkins Elementary School. She has been an educator for 24 years.

Sterling City ISD The new superintendent of Sterling City ISD is Travis Grubbs, who was most recently High Island ISD’s superintendent and K-12 principal.

Sweetwater ISD New superintendent Deidre Parish comes to Sweetwater from Darrouzett ISD, which she led since 2019. Previous assignments include serving as assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction in Decatur ISD and director of professional learning in Frisco ISD.


Temple ISD The Temple ISD board of trustees has approved Lisa Adams as deputy superintendent of academics and school leadership. She had been serving as the district’s assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction and previously worked as a teacher, instructional specialist, assistant principal, principal and executive director of secondary education.

Terrell ISD Terrell ISD has announced the appointment of Nicole Mansell as executive director of communications and marketing. She has more than 20 years of experience in that area in Irving, Dallas and Waxahachie ISDs.

Texarkana ISD Former coordinator for gifted and talented services and advanced academics Lauren Pilgreen is now principal of Morriss Mathematics and Engineering Elementary School. She was assistant principal of the Perot STEM Academy at Texas High School and a math and science curriculum coach.

Victoria ISD Ericka Barr has accepted the position of

principal of O’Connor ACE Elementary School. She has spent the past 20 years as an educator, most recently as the school’s assistant principal. She has an associate degree from Victoria College and bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Houston at Victoria. Welder Middle School’s new principal, Larry Rodriguez, has 20 years of experience in education and was most recently an assistant principal at Victoria West High School. His bachelor’s and master’s degrees were awarded from the University of Houston at Victoria.

Waco ISD Mountainview Elementary School’s new principal is Cari Detlefsen, former coordinator of human resources in West ISD. Now leading Chavez Middle School is Pedro Hernandez, who comes to Waco from Temple ISD’s Travis Science Academy. He holds a master’s degree from Concordia University.

Highland Elementary School now has Sharina Hubbard as principal. She comes to Waco from Killeen ISD, where she was an assistant principal at Killeen High School. Cedar Ridge Elementary School’s former assistant principal, Erin Lange, is now campus principal. Reggie Lewis has assumed principal duties

at Carver Indian Spring Middle School after spending four years at Waco High, first as an assistant, then associate principal. He began his career in Dallas ISD and worked as an administrator in DeSoto ISD before joining Waco ISD. University High School will welcome Alonzo McAdoo as principal at the start of the 2022-23 academic year. He previously served as assistant principal of Waco High and as principal of Carver Middle School and, most recently, Chavez Middle School. Sterlin McGruder is the new principal of

Waco High School, coming to WISD from Austin ISD, where he was principal of Northeast Early College High. His 20year career in educational administration includes 13 years with Grand Prairie ISD. Mandi Murphy has been

tapped to lead Tennyson Middle School. 11 of her 16 years in education have been spent as an administrator, most recently in Fort Worth ISD. She holds a master’s degree from Lamar University. Matt Rambo is the new dean

of the Greater Waco Advanced Health Care Academy. He previously was principal of Tennyson Middle School and before that taught at Waco High. Bonnie Trammell, who is now principal of

West Avenue Elementary School, is an eightyear educator from Woodville ISD, where she was principal of Woodville Elementary. Her master’s degree in education administration was awarded from Tarleton State University. The Wiley Opportunity Center now has John Weeks as principal. He has been with the district for 20 years, working at both the elementary and secondary

levels. He was Waco High School’s Teacher of the Year in 2013. Hines Elementary School’s new principal, Cynthia Wise, is the former chief executive officer of Longview’s six-school East Texas Advanced Academies. An educator for three decades, she previously worked in DeSoto and Longview ISDs. Lake Air Montessori Magnet School now has Christi Yourman as principal. She comes to her new school from Midway ISD, where she was an assistant principal. She has a master’s degree from the University of Texas.

Waller ISD Former girls’ head basketball coach NeKisha Dunn has been promoted to district athletic director. A graduate of Waller High School, she received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Tarleton State University. She has 23 years of experience in education, including stints in Stafford and Lewisville ISDs before returning to her alma mater in 2015. Jamie Woodall, who was Brenham ISD’s

director of health and safety, has joined Waller ISD as executive director of school safety. The 17-year educator has a bachelor’s degree from Sam Houston State University and a master’s degree in public health from the University of North Texas.

Whitehouse ISD A new athletic director, Don Newton, is in place for Whitehouse ISD.

Wichita Falls ISD The Wichita Falls ISD board of trustees announces the appointment of Donny Lee as superintendent. He joins the district from Buna ISD, where he previously served as superintendent beginning in 2019. Prior to that, he was superintendent of Oakwood ISD and high school principal in Frankston ISD. He is a graduate of Stephen F. Austin State University with master’s and doctoral degrees from Lamar University. Four principal assignments have been announced. They and their schools are: • Alston Calliste, Kirby Middle School; • Lydia Coyle, Crockett Elementary School; • Danielle McSweeney, Fain Elementary School; • Amy Simmons, Cunningham Elementary School. > See Who’s News, page 34 Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

33


Who’s News

Gabriel Lopez has been

> Continued from page 33

Ysleta ISD (El Paso) Now serving as principal of Del Valle High School is Ivan Cedillo, who comes to YISD from Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD, where he was an associate principal. He received his bachelor’s degree from Vassar College and his master’s degree in educational administration from the University of North Texas, where he is working on his doctorate.

promoted from assistant principal of Hanks High School to principal of Bel Air Middle School. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at El Paso and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Lamar University. Leigh McWhorter has been

named athletic coordinator and head football coach at Parkland High School, coming to his new job from a 20-year career at Franklin High School, where he was a teacher and coach.

Bonita Torres is now principal

of Eastwood High School after serving as its assistant principal. She is a graduate of the University of Texas at El Paso with a master’s degree in educational administration from Lamar University. Former Eastwood Knolls International School assistant principal Monica Triplett now leads Tierra del Sol Elementary. The University of New Mexico graduate began her career in that state before earning a master’s degree in educational administration from New Mexico University.◄

Who’s News Do you have good news to share about your district?

Send news items for Who’s News directly to news@texasschoolbusiness.com

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Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022


THE BACK PAGE

“Now, do you really mean what you’re saying?” by Riney Jordan

S

ending out clear, concise, leave-nodoubt kind of messages has always been important, but in this age of text messages, emails and recorded voicemail, it seems more relevant and critical than ever. As adults, trying to convey an accurate message to a child can often be totally misinterpreted. That recently happened to our granddaughter Haley. She has two beautiful young boys. Teddy is 6 months old and his brother Carson is almost 3. Late one afternoon, she took the boys to visit Dad at his office. Knowing that Carson would probably get hungry before dinner, she had brought along some Pop-Tart treats for him. As she handed Carson his treat, he politely said, “I want two.”

Her response was simply, “No, you only need one.” This went back and forth for a while until she firmly said, “No, Carson! You are only getting one! Do you understand? One! Uno!” He looked at her with a rather confused look on his face and replied, “I want two of them.” Exasperated, she said, “OK, listen to me. If you can say ‘two’ in Spanish, I’ll give you two.”

Two of our three grown children were at our home and began sharing stories of their high school experiences. Our son told the story of how his English teacher wanted each of her students to write a paper with at least 600 words. After class, he asked if it mattered what he wrote about. Now, Todd was never our straight-A student, but he was a genius when it came to figuring a way to avoid school assignments. “You can write anything. Surprise me!” she replied.

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“Yes, Todd, just make it at least 600 words long. I do not care what it’s about.” I know what you’re thinking. This could have gone any number of ways. But Todd chose to simply write the lyrics of one of the more popular songs of the day, “The Mississippi Squirrel Revival,” as penned by the gifted lyricist Ray Stevens. In case you’re not familiar with this amusing little song, I strongly urge you to look it up. “To make sure that I had enough words, every time that he would repeat the chorus in the song, I would write it again on my paper.” “But, Todd, surely you knew that wasn’t going to work,” I said. “Hey, she never said that it had to be original. She just said I had to write 600 words.”

With all the confidence in the world, he looked her fully in the eyes, and with a grin from ear to ear, he simply said, “Two in Spanish.”

“No. Not at all! She said she enjoyed reading those lyrics so much that she gave me an A.”

Let me share another example that only recently came to light.

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“Anything?” he asked again.

I know. She probably should have been firm and stayed with her decision, but a 3-yearold face with that adorable little speech has caused many of us to cave.

He got the two tarts as Mom just shook her head and muttered, “Well, he won that one!”

Texas School Business

“Did you have to redo the assignment?” his sister asked.

He said that her instructions became much more specific after that. Good for her! As Peter Drucker is quoted as saying, “The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.”

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RINEY JORDAN is the author of two books and a frequent public speaker. To invite him to speak at your convocation, graduation or awards banquet, visit www.rineyjordan.com.

Texas School Business SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2022

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