September 2021
Belton ISD to Save Millions with Bond Refunds

The Belton ISD Board of Trustees on Monday approved refinancing a series of existing bonds, a move that is expected to generate savings of more than $3.4 million for taxpayers by the end of 2021.
Bond refunding allows districts to refinance to take advantage of lower interest rates. Belton ISD is looking to refinance bonds from the 2012 Bond approved by voters to build North Belton Middle School, Chisholm Trail Elementary and High Point Elementary.
Jennifer Ritter, the district’s financial advisor with Specialized Public Finance, said the Board’s action will allow the district to enter into a bond refunding transaction which is projected to result in a total debt service savings of $3,438,176 bringing the total net interest cost savings to $2,647,707.
Student Showcase -
Belton High School Marching 100 Drum Line
Members of the Belton High School Marching 100 drum line performed before the start of the meeting. Performing members included Bryan Little, Grayson Necessary, Gage Cushman, Jordan Huscanga, Diego Sanchez, Sam Fothergill, Vera Oliver, Grant Cushman, Brennan Lanham, Caden Van Cleave and Colter Boethel. The group is under the direction of Ian Smith and Shannon Gill.
Board Hears Reports on Debt Capacity, Redistricting
Specialized Public Finance Inc. presented to the Board about the district’s debt capacity and the process of debt issuance. Belton ISD currently has one of the lowest interest and sinking fund tax rates compared to other local fast-growth districts.

The Board also heard a report from Mike Morrison, a Baylor Law School professor emeritus and expert on redistricting. Morrison outlined the law surrounding redistricting and presented a first draft of how trustee districts could be adjusted to balance population changes reflected in the 2020 U.S. Census.
Board Recognition -
AP Scholars
The College Board has named 116 Belton ISD high school students as AP Scholars for their “college-level achievement” on Advanced Placement exams taken last spring. The awards are divided into four categories: AP Scholars, AP Scholars with Honor, AP Scholars with Distinction and National AP Scholars.
Board Approves Key Measures and Campus Objectives
The Board approved the adoption of district key progress measures and campus objectives. These measures will continue to lead administrators and staff toward meeting the five district-wide goals trustees approved in July.
Board Recognition -
Texas Department of Agriculture 'Best of the Bunch' Award
Belton ISD’s Nutrition Services department recently received statewide recognition for participating in the Texas Department of Agriculture’s Spring Farm Fresh Challenge. The district joined schools and childcare providers from across the state to “Eat Local, Teach Local and Be Social” from April 12-May 14. As part of the challenge, Belton ISD students ate local foods and learned about Texas agriculture, while staff shared their success on social media. For its efforts, Nutrition Services earned the “Best of the Bunch” award — the highest award tier available to school districts.
Board Committee Reports

Policy: The policy committee met on Sept. 13 and discussed BED(LOCAL). This policy is about public participation at board meetings. This discussion was an effort to align policies to best practices and help community members understand the policies so they can be prepared when they attend meetings. The committee also heard from Deanna Lovesmith, assistant superintendent of teaching and learning, as the group continued its discussions around EIC(LOCAL), the policy about class rank.

Facilities: The facilities committee did not meet this month as the Bond Exploration Committee, authorized by the Board last month, held its first meeting.
Superintendent's Report

  • Dr. Smith pointed out several highlights from September 2021, including a focus on staff learning through Balanced Leadership training, discussions about the future of New Tech High School, the kick off of the Financial Ambassador program and the Bond Exploration Committee meetings and the BEEF Boots & BBQ fundraising event.
  • Dr. Smith reported the district's enrollment as of Sept. 16 was 13,362. This is 897 more students than were enrolled on the same day last year.
Consent Agenda Highlights

  • Unaudited financial report for the month ending August 31, 2021
  • Expenditures over $50,000 (Goalbook Toolkit and Transportation Fleet Vehicles)
  • Supply, equipment and service bids (RFPs for awards, trophies, plaques and related items)
  • Designation of person to calculate district tax rates
  • Revisions to BED(LOCAL): Board Members - Public Participation - 2nd Reading
  • Amendment to Board Operating Procedures
  • Class size waiver

To review Belton ISD board meeting agendas and full packet materials, click here.