Jan. 9, 2018
 
Northwest Board Notes: Jan. 8 Meeting
 
The Northwest Independent School District Board of Trustees met yesterday - Monday, Jan. 8 - during a regularly scheduled meeting. This is a recap of the major actions and reports from the meeting. To see every item that was discussed or voted on, click here.
Texas Academic Progress Report presented
Curriculum staff presented the district's annual Texas Academic Progress Report, which showed Northwest ISD students significantly surpassing state expectations.

In all four indexes measured by the TAPR - student achievement, student progress, closing performance gaps and postsecondary readiness - Northwest ISD schools and their students surpassed the target index scores. Additionally, all 28 district schools earned the top rating (met standard), with six schools amassing 10 academic distinctions (Granger Elementary School; Chisholm Trail and Wilson middle schools; and Byron Nelson, Northwest and Steele Accelerated high schools each earned at least one distinction).

In all subjects measured - reading, math, writing, science and social studies - Northwest ISD exceeded the state average in the "approaches" grade level, "meets" grade level and "masters" grade level categories.

All district TAPR documents from the Texas Education Agency can be found at this link.

Board approves updates to district policy

Trustees approved updates to the district's policy following the state's 2017 legislative session.

Included among the approved updates were alterations to policies to remove people from schools for unsafe conduct, allow a grace period for unpaid student lunch accounts, give authority to the superintendent to terminate the employment of an educator whose certification is revoked by the state, and limit personal electronic communications between employees and students. Many of these updates keep the district's policies in line with changing regulations, such as the state requirement to install video cameras in special education classrooms.

The updates to policy were recommended by the Texas Association of School Boards, which regularly provides school districts with guidance regarding new state and federal laws and how to update policies to comply with these laws.

Finance team working on budget process for 2018-19
The district's finance team provided trustees with an update on its planning for the 2018-19 budget, with the budget planning now underway and slated to last through February.

Trustees will review the team's budget in March and May before the adoption process takes place in June. Following the adoption of the budget, the adoption process of the district's tax rate will take place in July and August. Updates on the budget will be provided in Board Notes during these months. Community members are always invited to provide input regarding the budget and tax rate during the public input portion of board meetings.

A comprehensive annual financial report will be released in November 2019, as the district annually reviews its budget and provides trustees with an overview of the previous year's finances.

Report from Byron Nelson student leaders heard
Byron Nelson High School student leaders presented a report to the board regarding the issue of human trafficking in Texas and the United States.

These students presented the board with an overview of the topic as part of the Texas Student Council's 2017-18 state service project. The goal of Byron Nelson Student Council members is to provide support for those who are in need because of human trafficking and to inform the school community of the critical nature of young people trapped in these circumstances.

Human trafficking is considered modern-day slavery, as individuals are forced into labor against their will or without understanding of the situation. Texas is considered by federal agencies to be one of the top locations for human trafficking because its border with Mexico is one of the most-crossed borders in the world. Gov. Greg Abbott recently proclaimed January as Human Trafficking Prevention Month.

In other action, the board
  • Approved an easement for Curtis Elementary School, which is currently under construction, after working with Oncor to determine the best location to allow power lines for the school.
  • Recognized Barnes and Noble of Southlake for organizing and hosting the Northwest ISD Education Foundation holiday book drive, which provided district schools and students with new books donated by store patrons.
Justin Elementary School students led the pledge.
Justin Elementary School students led the pledge.
Trustees recognized Barnes and Noble of Southlake and the Northwest ISD Education Foundation for donating books to district schools and students.
Trustees recognized Barnes and Noble of Southlake and the Northwest ISD Education Foundation for donating books to district schools and students.
Byron Nelson STUCO members presented an overview of the human trafficking problem in Texas.
Byron Nelson STUCO members presented an overview of the human trafficking problem in Texas.