Texarkana, TX – The first reading of the 2015-16 school budget along with property exchange, summer maintenance projects and a new elementary campus design were discussed during the April 21, 2015 regular session of the Texarkana Independent School District Board of Trustees.
Trustees were presented the First Reading of the 2015-2016 budget. According to Chief Financial Officer Deidra Reeves, “TISD’s budgeting process for the upcoming year essentially starts in February by working directly with campus principals and departments on what their anticipated needs will be for the upcoming year,”
“The numbers being presented this evening are very preliminary at this time,” she shared. “For our first reading, you will see three scenarios. Scenario #1 is assuming that all funding, revenue and expenditures remain the same as in 2014-15. With that, TISD would face an $886,124 deficit. In the second scenario, we are showing the passing of Senate Bill 2 giving TISD a $1,369,702 increase in state funding. Our final funding scenario is assuming that House Bill 1759 passes in an effort to correct inequity in funding public education. This picture would give TISD a surplus of $3,451,267.”
Board of Trustees will hear the second and third readings in May and June, respectively, with final budget approval given in late-June.
In other action items, a resolution was approved to exchange the TISD property at 3517 Summerhill Road for a portion of the Pete Mankins Nissan property at 3707 Summerhill Road. The Mankins property adjoins more appropriately to the Texas Middle School land and will provide far more space for future school expansions and areas for additional parking.
A final action item for the evening was Trustee approval of a resolution to nominate Paul Norton for the 2015 Texas Association of School Boards Superintendent of the Year. Candidates are chosen for their strong leadership skills, dedication to improving the quality of education in their school districts, commitment to public support and involvement in education and ability to build good employee relations among teachers and staff members.
Casey Nichols, Executive Director of Support Operations, gave an Operations Update for the current school year that included fall highlights of a new Food Service Management agreement with St. James Day School, development and launch of a new technology inventory system for the district and development and implementation of Campus Safety Committees for each campus. Moving into Summer 2015, TISD has plans to do a roof replacement at Wake Village Elementary School, office and entrance renovations at Highland Park Elementary School, playground replacement at Westlawn Elementary School and renovations to the Texas High School Field House classroom to be used for the new Sports Medicine class.
Final presentation of the evening was an Elementary Design Overview for the new elementary campus approved in the November 2014 bond election. The new campus, slated for an August 2016 opening, will be located on15 acres off Gibson Lane near the southwest corner of the Encore Waggoner Creek Apartment Homes.
With a total of 67,800 square feet, the school is expected to serve approximately 400 students in Pre-Kindergarten through Fifth Grade and will feature a pod design for extended learning spaces. Included in the design are: 22 classrooms; Research & Design Center/Library; Media Center; Art Room; Gymnasium; Cafeteria and Kitchen. The facility has been designed and positioned for add-on space for future enrollment growth, above the 400 capacity.