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PISD Board Notes for 07-19-21 trustee meeting


Volume VII | July 2021
Board Notes
The Princeton ISD Board of Trustees meets monthly. Board meetings are typically held on the third Monday of each month and open to the public. Here are highlights from the July 19 meeting.
Trustees approve purchase of 1,400 Chromebooks
Princeton ISD board members approved the purchase of 1,400 additional Chromebooks with the help of federal grant funds.
"The idea behind this would allow all 6th- through 12th-graders to have access to a device if they need one for use at school and at home," Superintendent Donald McIntyre said. "We hope this will help expand their educational opportunities."
According to Mr. McIntyre, grant money was used to purchase several hundred Chromebooks to assist during virtual learning as a result of COVID. Those funds are available to expand technology again this year.
"One lesson we learned through COVID was a new way to reach students who are not in the classroom," he said. "Now we are figuring out how to use these tools to supplement and continue to expand their education."
The PISD Board of Trustees proposed to lower the tax rate to $1.4603 for the upcoming 2021-2022 budget year.
"We are pleased we were able to reduce the tax rate again," Superintendent Donald McIntyre said.
The breakdown of the proposed tax rate is .9603 cents for maintenance and operation and .50 cents for debt reduction, which represents a decrease of .0095 cents per $100 valuation.
Trustees will vote on the proposed budget and tax rate at the Aug. 16 meeting.
The Princeton school board approved the reopening plan for the upcoming 2021-2022 school year, with an emphasis on ensuring student and staff safety. This plan can be accessed on the district website under the COVID 19 Operations tab by clicking Return-to-Campus Transition Plan, which is also available at this link:
Highlights include:
-Masks will be optional for students and staff who wish to wear them.
-Visitors and volunteers will be allowed back on campus.
-There will not be a virtual education option. All students will attend classes on-campus.
"This plan will be re-evaluated as guidance may change throughout the school year," Superintendent Donald McIntyre said.
With several positions up for election on the school board, trustees voted to call two simultaneous elections for Nov. 2 to choose trustees for at total of four places.
Filing for a place on the board in each election is underway.
The general election was called to fill three expired terms, which are up following 3-year terms. Incumbents for these places on the board are Carlos Cuellar, Joe Gilliam and Bob Lovelady, and so far, Mr. Cuellar and Mr. Gilliam have filed to run for re-election.
A special election was called to fill one unexpired term, currently held by Starla Sharpe, and she has already filed for re-election.
Since there are two elections for school board places, interested candidates must choose which ballot they want to file for, which is somewhat different than typical elections in the past where every school board candidate is on the same ballot and the top vote-getters are elected as trustees.
The deadline to file for the general election is 5 p.m. Monday, Aug. 16.
The deadline to file for the special election is 5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 1.
School board purchases land for future school site
The Princeton ISD board of trustees voted to ratify the purchase of 30 acres of land as a future school site.
The property is located at the northwest corner of FM 1377 and County Road 495. This will be a future school site as growth continues to move north.
Princeton ISD has access to up to $3.8 million in funding to investigate and implement programs to address the COVID learning gaps.
During Monday's meeting, there was a public hearing and residents shared their opinions about what might work to address the issue.
"Items under consideration include extending before-school, after-school and summer tutoring," said Superintendent Donald McIntyre. "There is also consideration for programs students could access both in school and out of school."
The district is continuing to seeking parent input. Provide your feedback today using the survey link below: